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Graham Roberts defends Tottenham Hotspur star Dele Alli over dive row

Roberts leaps to Alli's defence over diving
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Graham Roberts defends Tottenham Hotspur star Dele Alli over his alleged diving antics.

Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Graham Roberts has claimed that the recent criticism being aimed at Dele Alli is "unfair".

The England international has come under fire for appearing to dive in Sunday's 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.

On two occasions - one with Wayne Hennessey and another with Patrick van Aanholt - Alli was accused of going to ground too easily, and it has become somewhat of a pattern.

Alli has been booked twice already this season for simulation, but Roberts has claimed that the furore is unjustified as he believes that other players have not been criticised as heavily.

In a piece for the Daily Mail, the former defender wrote: "No-one said anything when Roberto Firmino took a dive at Southampton, nothing from Gary Lineker or Alan Shearer.

"No-one said anything about Chris Smalling against Newcastle. What was that? That was a 9.5? There's something wrong when big centre-halves are diving around.

"No one said anything about Jack Wilshere and Nacho Monreal diving in the EFL Cup final. I saw those dives on Twitter because I don't watch Arsenal play as a point of principle."

Alli escaped a booking for his antics against Palace.

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Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Dele Alli during his side's Premier League clash with Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on November 28, 2017
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