Mauricio Pochettino: 'Dele Alli does not deserve FIFA ban'

Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino on the touchline during his side's North London derby against Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium on November 6, 2016
© SilverHub
Tottenham Hotspur manager Mauricio Pochettino hopes that Dele Alli does not get punished by FIFA for his middle-finger gesture in England's win over Slovakia.

Tottenham Hotspur boss Mauricio Pochettino has expressed support for Dele Alli and hopes that his player does not receive a FIFA ban.

The England international was caught by television cameras making a middle-finger gesture during the 2018 World Cup qualifier against Slovakia at Wembley.

Alli insists that the gesture was aimed towards former Spurs teammate Kyle Walker rather than referee Clement Turpin, but the midfielder could still face punishment from FIFA.

On Thursday, Pochettino told a press conference: "I'm not worried. He told the media afterwards it was a joke with Kyle Walker. There's a lot of things worse than that situation.

"It's true it's not a fantastic gesture but it's not a big issue. It was a joke in a moment with his teammate. I don't think it'll be a big issue with FIFA or with us.

"I remember when I was a player, worse things happened on the pitch but today there's a lot of cameras, maybe 50 cameras, and we're so focused on the players.

"From my point of view, it's not a big issue. He doesn't deserve to be banned by FIFA."

Up next for Spurs is a Premier League game on Saturday at Everton.

Milan Skriniar appears to kick Dele Alli during the World Cup qualifier between England and Slovakia on September 4, 2017
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