When Dele Alli cupped his ears after scoring the opener in Tottenham’s 1-0 over Barnsley on Wednesday night, many believed he was sending a message to the fans.

Alli has come under criticism from some supporters after a string of inconsistent displays.

The 21-year-old has had a mixed start to the season, scoring three goals in all competitions but missing the Dortmund win through suspension and facing disciplinary action from FIFA for the middle figure incident.

But Mauricio Pochettino has explained Alli’s celebration against Barnsley wasn’t a dig at the fans or the club.

“That was a situation that was a reference with one friend that was shared with someone in the stand,” said Pochettino.

“It’s nothing related with us, the fans, the club, with nothing. It was only a joke with one friend in the stand. That’s true because yesterday he told me.”



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