Dominic Calvert-Lewin has praised Dele Alli’s “mental toughness” as he backs his Everton team-mate to rediscover his old form.
The Toffees signed Alli permanently from Tottenham Hotspur during the winter transfer window.
Prior to this, the midfielder’s form for Spurs had declined over the past couple of seasons. He only started seven times for them in 2021/22 before his exit in January.
Alli has been unable to hit the ground running at Everton. He has failed to register a goal or an assist in his six appearances and he has only started once in the league.
He was tremendous for Spurs when he first arrived from MK Dons. Alli was named Young Player of the Year in both 2015/16 and 16/17 after scoring 28 Premier League goals across both seasons.
The 25-year-old represented England at Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup after making his Three Lions debut at the age of 19.
His Everton colleague, Calvert-Lewin, has backed Alli to rediscover his old form, insisting that the former Spurs man “has everything”.
“Dele has settled really well and is working hard every day in training,” Calvert-Lewin told evertonfc.com. “He has everything: athleticism, technique, aggression, he is big and tall and strong.
“It [Everton move] is a platform for him to rebuild his confidence and showcase what he is about. Everyone knows what Dele is capable of – perhaps the criticism comes from frustration because people know what he can do.
“He has played for England and in the Champions League and scored against Real Madrid. Those things load expectation onto his shoulders but he is big enough and old enough and strong enough to accept that and rise to the challenge.”
Alli has faced plenty of criticism in recent seasons and Calvert-Lewin – who is a reported transfer target for Arsenal – has praised his team-mate’s “mental toughness” after taking a “risk” by joining Everton.
“People like to build someone up, then when they get there, tear them down,” he continued. “I respect his mental toughness and resolve to deal with that pressure. And I respect his decision to come here and take that risk to show people what he is about.
“I have no doubt he can do that and when he gets his opportunity, he will take it. People will always talk, no matter who you are and where you come from. I respect his mental toughness and I back him.”
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