Antonio Conte may have started Dele Alli and Harry Winks for Tottenham recently because he wants to put them in the “shop window”, as writes the FootballInsider.
That is the view of ex-Aston Villa and England forward Gabby Agbonlahor, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the pair who starred in the 2-2 draw with Liverpool on Sunday (19 December).
Winks and Dele were both surprise inclusions in the starting XI for their second and first Premier League start under Conte, respectively.
As quoted by football.london today, the Italian claimed he had been impressed by Dele’s “desire” to try and earn himself a place in his plans.
“You can take a lot from the game if you’re Tottenham,” Agbonlahor told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley.
“Yes, it wasn’t Liverpool’s best team, they were missing Fabinho, Van Dijk, Henderson – quite a few players.
“But you want to see that from Spurs. More intensity and less fear of the top teams. Go toe-to-toe.
“They’ve got to build on that and show that intensity again.
“With Winks and Dele Alli, the manager will look at it and think to himself ‘You know what, I just want my team to show they want to play for Spurs.
You don’t know what he’s thinking, is he trying to put some of these players in the shop window? Give them some games so buyers know they can still play.
“What he will want is them to show it more consistently. Can they go and play the next game with the same work rate, the same intensity and the same quality.”