Search

Dele ‘can be a star for England’ says Villa

PUBLISHED: 15:00 02 June 2018

England's Dele Alli and Ruben Loftus-Cheek during a training session at The Grove Hotel (pic Mike Egerton/PA)

England's Dele Alli and Ruben Loftus-Cheek during a training session at The Grove Hotel (pic Mike Egerton/PA)

PA Wire/PA Images

England midfielder Dele Alli is capable of emerging from this summer’s World Cup as a “superstar”, according to Ricky Villa.

Alli is widely recognised as one of the finest talents in Gareth Southgate’s squad but his place in the starting XI is in doubt following, by his standards, a less convincing season with Tottenham.

Jesse Lingard’s significant improvement at Manchester United means he also has a further rival for selection but former Spurs favourite Villa – a World Cup winner with Argentina in 1978 – is adamant Alli has to start.

England’s preparations for Russia 2018 continue on Saturday when they host Nigeria at Wembley, and though it is Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane many expect to inspire Southgate’s team, it is the 22-year-old Alli who Villa predicts will “have a great World Cup”.

“He’s young but at the top; if he plays well in the World Cup he can become a superstar,” the Argentinian told Press Association Sport.

“I prefer that he is in the team. I like this type of player – every time he gets the ball you can expect something different. I’d be disappointed if he’s not in the first team.

“Dele Alli’s another great player, who came to the club very young. (Mauricio) Pochettino worked very hard with him and improved him every day. Now he’s at the top level, so everybody expects so much from him. He can play nice football. I expect him to have a great World Cup and be a top, top player.”

It is largely because of Alli that the 65-year-old Villa expects England to have a good tournament, but he does not consider them among its favourites, and instead believes that reaching the quarter-finals would represent a success.

“My favourite is Brazil,” he said at a Football Whispers event. “The way they play the ball on the floor; Neymar, (Philippe) Coutinho, Willian. They have three or four players who can make a difference anytime.

“Spain play nice football and have great players, and I expect Germany to be there, and Argentina in the last four.

“If England can get into the last four it’ll be great for the English league. It’s a young team this year.

“I expect them to do well, qualify from the first round, but after it’s very difficult to predict. This year they have a nice team – young – and I expect England to do better than at the last World Cup.”

Latest East London Sports News

09:48

London Lions will look to overturn a two-point deficit when they host Newcastle in the second leg of their BBL Cup semi-final at the Copper Box Arena on Sunday.

09:32

Essex Senior League: Sporting Bengal United 1 Leyton Athletic 1

Anderson strike inspires Hammers but they are left to cling on at the end

Yesterday, 14:32

National League: Boreham Wood 1 Leyton Orient 0

Yesterday, 08:00

The O’s will continue to be without right-back Myles Judd

Fri, 22:00

Leyton Orient won 10 points out of a possible 12 in the month and moved to the top of the table

Fri, 14:00

Tower Hamlets will keep looking to pull themselves away from the foot of the Essex Senior League table with two fixtures this weekend.

Fri, 13:00

West Ham United will aim to rack up a third straight win in the Premier League when they host Crystal Palace on Saturday.

PROMOTED CONTENT

Are you a landlord looking for a fixed rental income, paid whether the property is empty or not? Steve Westley, general manager at estate agents Elliot Leigh, explains their Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it takes the stress out of letting your property.

Newsletter Sign Up

East London Advertiser twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read sport

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now