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Dele Alli Is 'Up There with Anybody' Says Frank Lampard After Real Madrid Brace

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistNovember 2, 2017

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 01:  Dele Alli of Tottenham Hotspur celebrates scoring his side's first goal during the UEFA Champions League group H match between Tottenham Hotspur and Real Madrid at Wembley Stadium on November 1, 2017 in London, United Kingdom.  (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Frank Lampard has hailed Dele Alli as one of the best young players in the world after he bagged a brace on Wednesday to help Tottenham Hotspur sink Real Madrid 3-1 at Wembley Stadium. 

Speaking on BT Sport (h/t Lewis Winter of the Express), former Chelsea midfielder Lampard also compared Alli to himself:

"I think I played deeper. I think a while ago now he got moved behind Harry Kane because simply his runs are too good.

"His ability around the box and his knack of getting in the right place was too good and they link so well together. 

"This season he's played up there quite high, then he's dropped back into midfield. He hasn't found that consistency of what he found for the second half of last season. 

"In terms of young players in world football, his runs and timing and obviously his quality of finishing, is up there with anybody.

"I see those angled runs I tried to make. I always tried to make runs behind defenders ... because the defenders were sometimes marking and don't see that angled run behind."

Alli opened the scoring in the 27th minute when he converted Kieran Trippier's cross from close range, and he doubled the lead in the second half courtesy of a deflection off Sergio Ramos, following an impressive run from the midfielder.

He should have had a hat-trick when he sent a free header wide, but Christian Eriksen made sure of the result before Cristiano Ronaldo pulled back a consolation late on.

Squawka Football shared Alli's numbers:

Squawka Football @Squawka

Dele Alli's game by numbers vs. Real Madrid: 5 take-ons 4 tackles won 3 shots 2 fouls won 2 goals He's come a long way in five years. 📈 https://t.co/wybAIyWJPt

Meanwhile, as broadcaster Jake Humphrey noted, Alli has come a long way since making his debut as a 16-year-old:

Jake Humphrey @mrjakehumphrey

2nd November, 2012: @dele_official makes MK Dons debut vs. Cambridge City 1st November, 2017: Scores twice vs. Real Madrid at Wembley Dream big kids......

Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino praised him, too. Per Jack Rosser of the Evening Standard, the manager said the match was a "great opportunity for him to show his quality" and believes Alli is "getting better and better every day."

It was Alli's first UEFA Champions League appearance of the season after sitting out the opening three games through suspension, and he was delighted to finally be involved, per Spurs' official Twitter feed:

Tottenham Hotspur @SpursOfficial

"We feel like we're a top side and nights like these show that we are" 🗣️ Two-goal @Dele_Official on a special night at Wembley. #COYS https://t.co/FyxA0ntoVK

The youngster perhaps has not been at his best so far this campaign, but it's easy to forget he's still only 21 given the key role he already plays for Tottenham.

Wednesday's performance offered a timely reminder not only of the bright future Alli has ahead of him—and he has plenty of time to develop his game even further—but also the heights he's already capable of achieving.

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