Will Manchester City finally land Kalidou Koulibaly?

Pep Guardiola's City want defensive reinforcements and Napoli centre-back Koulibaly is reportedly at the top of the list.

If they are unsuccessful, Sevilla's Jules Kounde is next on the list.

 

TOP STORY – CITY NOT GIVING UP KOULIBALY

Manchester City are still in talks with Napoli to sign star defender Kalidou Koulibaly, according to journalist Fabrizio Romano.

City have been tipped to sign Koulibaly, who has also been linked to Ligue 1 champions Paris Saint-Germain.

However, City are yet to reach an agreement with Napoli and Sevilla's Jules Kounde is the "backup option" but a bid has already been turned down.

 

ROUND-UP

- Romano says Wolves will complete the signing of Barcelona full-back Nelson Semedo on Monday. It comes as Barca eye Ajax defender Sergino Dest or Real Betis' Emerson to replace Semedo. Norwich City's Max Aarons has also been linked.

Milan have made Fiorentina's Nikola Milenkovic their number one defensive target ahead of Celtic centre-back Kristoffer Ajer, reports the Daily Record.

- Calciomercato claims Juventus are eyeing Real Madrid full-back Marcelo. The Brazilian has been repeatedly linked with a Cristiano Ronaldo reunion in Turin.

- The Telegraph says PSG are interested in Tottenham's Dele Alli. Out of favour under Jose Mourinho, Spurs are reportedly targeting Manchester United's Jesse Lingard as a replacement.

Roma remain interested in Napoli's Arkadiusz Milik but Madrid outcast Luka Jovic has emerged as 'Plan B', according to Calciomercato.

Leeds United are out of the race to sign Dinamo Zagreb sensation Josko Gvardiol, reports Romano. Wanted by Marcelo Bielsa, the Croatian teenager is now set for Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig.

Jose Mourinho has offered no assurances about the future of Dele Alli after the Tottenham midfielder was linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain.

Alli was left out of the Spurs squad on Sunday, when a Son Heung-min and Harry Kane-inspired Tottenham came from behind to beat Southampton 5-2, with Mourinho explaining his absence was a tactical decision because he had too many players in his position.

The England international, 24, started against Everton in Spurs' Premier League opener but was replaced at half-time and did not travel to Bulgaria in midweek for their Europa League qualifier against Lokomotiv Plovdiv.

Given Gareth Bale has been added to Mourinho's attacking options this weekend, the outlook is unlikely to get any better for Alli, who is said to be of interest to Champions League finalists PSG.

Asked whether Alli would be leaving the club, Mourinho told reporters: "I'm not responsible for the [transfer] market.

"I don't know how to answer your question in relation to that. The only thing I can say is that I left eight players behind. They stayed and trained this morning because they are a big group and Dele is amongst these players.

"You could see our team. I cannot start with all of them and I cannot have a bench without defenders or midfielders. In the same way the squad is a puzzle, the bench is also a little puzzle.

"So to have on the bench Toby [Alderweireld] and Serge [Aurier], and Moussa [Sissoko] and Gio [Lo Celso], and [Erik] Lamela, and [Steven] Bergwijn. I cannot have on the bench four wingers or three wingers and a number 10, and then no defenders.

"Everything is a puzzle so in these matches that he stayed out, probably Tuesday he will play [in the EFL Cup against Leyton Orient] and others he will stay out."

Asked if he wanted to keep Alli, Mourinho replied: "I want a balanced squad, that's what I want.

"No, he doesn't need to be sacrificed, but the squad is a puzzle."

Spurs, for whom Son scored four against Southampton, signed Bale on loan from Real Madrid on Saturday and also added left-back Sergio Reguilon from LaLiga's champions after he impressed on loan with Sevilla last term.

"A coach always likes to have the best players in his squad," Mourinho added.

"Gareth, when fit and in condition, is one of the top players in Europe, and Sergio was amazing last season in Sevilla."

Dele Alli was left out of Tottenham's matchday squad to face Southampton on Sunday, with Jose Mourinho admitting he was simply down the pecking order in his attacking options.

Alli was hauled off at half-time of Spurs' season-opening 1-0 loss to Everton last weekend and was left at home when Mourinho's men travelled to Bulgaria in midweek for their Europa League tie against Lokomotiv Plovdiv.

And there was still no way back for the England international at St Mary's, where Mourinho handed a start to Tanguy Ndombele in midfield and persisted with a front three of Lucas Moura, Harry Kane and Son Heung-min.

Giovani Lo Celso, Moussa Sissoko, Erik Lamela and Steven Bergwijn were all on the bench and Mourinho explained Alli - who was linked with Paris Saint-Germain on Sunday - was a victim of what he feels is a bloated squad.

Asked if Alli had an injury, Mourinho told BT Sport before kick-off: "No, we have a huge squad, a squad with numbers that are very difficult to manage.

"I never had it, I don't like to have it and it's not easy for me to be here with 18 players and to have 10 training in the training ground - too many players.

"I start with Son, with Lucas, with Harry and on the bench I still have Moussa Sissoko and Lamela and Bergwijn.

"We have too many players for some positions and some of them they are paying the price of this."

The outlook is unlikely to get any better for Alli after Gareth Bale returned to the club on a loan deal from Real Madrid on Saturday, though the Wales forward is currently injured.

Following kick-off in Sunday's clash, reports subsequently emerged that Paris Saint-Germain had started talks with Spurs over signing the 24-year-old.

Alli started the Mourinho era in fine form when the Portuguese arrived in November, scoring four times and providing two assists in his first seven league appearances under the Spurs boss.

Yet he scored just twice after Boxing Day and was not named in England's squad for the recent Nations League games against Iceland and Denmark.

It has been a fall from grace for Alli, who Mourinho's predecessor Mauricio Pochettino called the best player in the world for his age just two years ago.

Jose Mourinho insisted there is "no story" over his decision to substitute Dele Alli at half-time during Tottenham's defeat to Everton.

Spurs started their Premier League campaign in disappointing fashion on Sunday, going down to Dominic Calvert-Lewin's header in a 1-0 home defeat.

Alli, who saw an effort saved by England team-mate Jordan Pickford during the first half, only featured for the opening 45 minutes before being replaced by Moussa Sissoko.

However, Mourinho was adamant the decision was made with the team in mind and has no reflection on his relationship with Alli.

"The change at half-time was not the first time in my career, won't be the last time," Mourinho told a news conference on Wednesday.

"The last one was with Eric Dier against Olympiacos when I took him off after 25 or 30 minutes. When I do these kinds of things, I always do it for the team, not against the player.

"In some cases, the option was proven right, in some other cases proven wrong. In this case, it didn't work. The team in the second half was not better than the first half.

"That's my job to make decisions to try to make the best for the team when I am not happy with the performance. There is no story.

"Dele is a very polite guy. Very calm. I think he's a bit introspective, when you think a lot about things. So I think the way he reacted was [like] Dele.

"He was quiet, was sad but in the end after the game he was just one of many. But again, I repeat, he's a good boy. Very, very polite. Good boy, really good boy."

Dier was the subject of an early change in Mourinho's first home game in charge of Spurs against Olympiacos last year, and the 26-year-old dismissed the suggestion Alli would be negatively affected by the decision.

"He took me off after 30 minutes, even worse!" Dier told reporters. "I think Dele is fine. We're big boys.

"Football is not a nice world, it's all about results and performances. Dele is not the first to be taken off at half-time. That's a thing that can happen.

"If you want to be a big club or a big player, it's about the way you react and move forward. Knowing Dele and his mentality, he'll work even harder and try to push on."

Reports on Tuesday suggested Alli could be used as a potential makeweight in a deal to bring Gareth Bale back to Spurs from Real Madrid.

Negotiations between Tottenham and Madrid are ongoing, though Bale's agent Jonathan Barnett refused to confirm to Stats Perform News if a deal was close.

Could Tottenham and Gareth Bale reunite?

Bale, who left Tottenham for Real Madrid in 2013, is not wanted in the Spanish capital.

While Manchester Untied are reportedly interested, former club Spurs are Bale's preference.

 

TOP STORY – SPURS LEAD BALE RACE

Tottenham are ahead of Premier League rivals Manchester United in the pursuit of Real Madrid outcast Gareth Bale, according to ESPN.

Bale has reportedly been told he can leave Madrid after falling out of favour with head coach Zinedine Zidane.

The Welshman wants to return to former club Tottenham after leaving Spurs for Madrid in 2013 and the Telegraph claims Dele Alli could be included in a deal to bring Bale back to London.

While United's interest is believed to be serious, it all depends on whether they are able to sign number one target and Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Transfer Podcast reports United believe that if they leave final negotiations for Sancho until the last week of the transfer window, Dortmund will eventually cave in and sell the England international. Dortmund have refused to budge on their €120million (£108m) valuation.

- The Mirror claims Arsenal are close to offloading unwanted trio Sead Kolasinac, Matteo Guendouzi and Lucas Torreira. Kolasinac has been linked to West Ham, Valencia are considering Guendouzi and Torreira has been tipped to join Torino. The Gunners want to keep full-back Hector Bellerin but he may be sold to Paris Saint-Germain.

Roma are poised to sign Juventus full-back Mattia De Sciglio, reports Fabrizio Romano. It comes as Juve close in on Roma striker Edin Dzeko, while Roma Press says the latter are set to complete the capture of Hellas Verona defender Marash Kumbulla. He had been linked to Inter, Lazio and Juve.

-  Luis Suarez's move to Juve has collapsed, says RAC1. The Barcelona veteran had been tipped to leave Camp Nou for Turin but a delay in an Italian citizenship test has reportedly scuppered the deal. Atletico Madrid are now an option for the Uruguayan.

- The Mail claims Bayern Munich are ready to renew their interest in Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi. The Englishman was linked to Bayern last year before opting to sign a new deal. Now, Hudson-Odoi could swap London for Munich before the October 5 deadline, with Juve also reportedly eyeing the Chelsea star.

- Diario AS reports Turkish giants Fenerbahce are eyeing Atletico's Diego Costa. Fenerbahce just sold striker Vedat Muriqi to Lazio and may use the transfer funds to bring Costa to Istanbul.

United had been favourites to land Sergio Reguilon from Madrid but the Telegraph and widespread reports say Tottenham are poised to sign the Spanish full-back. United have been reluctant to include a buy-back clause in any deal with Madrid.

- According to Sport Bild, Liverpool have contacted Bayern regarding Thiago Alcantara but the asking price is too high. United and Barca are also reportedly interested.

Dele Alli should be approaching his peak years but the Tottenham midfielder appears to be in stark decline.

From his Spurs debut back in August 2015, the midfielder's trajectory was initially impressive as he quickly adapted to the big step up from MK Dons.

An England debut soon followed and the youngster apparently had the world at his feet.

Fast forward to the opening game of Spurs' 2020-21 Premier League campaign on Sunday, when Alli was hooked by Jose Mourinho at half-time of a limp 1-0 loss to Everton, and the outlook is markedly different.

Alli has stagnated, perhaps even regressed, with any hope that the new campaign would herald a fresh start quick to evaporate. 

So just how far below his high-water mark has the 24-year-old fallen? The Opta numbers tell the story...

GOALS HARDER TO COME BY

To underline just how well Alli transitioned from the third tier to the top flight, he scored 10 goals in his maiden Premier League season in 2015-16.

That jumped to a mightily impressive 18 in the following campaign, that haul coming at a rate of a goal every 169 minutes.

And yet in 2017-18 and 2018-19 combined, Alli managed just 14 goals, with the latter season yielding five at a rate of one every 367 minutes.

To his credit, Alli upped his game on that front last term, finding the back of the net eight times, or once every 231 minutes.

His attempts on target have followed a similar trend, peaking 1.3 per game in 2016-17 and bottoming out at 0.5 the next season.  

He squeezed in one shot at goal during his lacklustre 45-minute outing against the Toffees at the weekend.

NOT GETTING INVOLVED AT THE SHARP END

Alli was a tremendous creative force for his side for several years, his debut season at Spurs producing nine assists in the league to set the tone.

He built on that with seven the following season and 10 in 2017-18, only to retreat to abject mediocrity with returns of three and four in the next two campaigns.

Those numbers contribute to a clear back-slide in Alli's ability to create chances, which once seemed so easy for him.

In three consecutive seasons from the point of his first appearance for Spurs, Alli tallied 55, 52 and then 64 for the number of chances created.

In contrast, from the start of the 2018-19 season to the end of 2019-20, he laid on just 50 chances combined.

The chances-created-per-minute stat highlights the negative trend, with the 2015-16 figure coming in at a chance created every 45 minutes, declining to one laid on every 80 minutes by the most recently completed season.

A TOUCHY SUBJECT?

Diving into even the small details does not end up reflecting well on Alli, who is simply having fewer touches of the ball than he used to.

Again, his first season holds up well under scrutiny, Alli touching the ball on average 64 times per 90 minutes, but that dropped to 60 in 2019-20.

It may only be a small change, but a closer look throws up a more revealing fact about Alli's touches in the opposition penalty area.

He peaked on that front in 2017-18, when he managed the feat 163 times at an average of 4.9 per 90 minutes. That compares to 83 at an average of last season.

PASSING THE BUCK...

For a midfielder with 37 England caps, passing should be a key skill of Alli's, and one you would expect to improve over time.

However, the numbers are again somewhat disconcerting for Alli, who did initially set off in the right direction.

In 2015-16 he completed 822 passes (30 per 90 minutes) with an accuracy of 76 per cent, which climbed to an 80 per cent accuracy when he found team-mates with 825 passes at an impressive average of 41 per 90 minutes in 2018-19.

But he slumped on that front last term, back to 2015-16 levels, with the numbers only favourable at all if you concern yourselves with decimal places.

DRIBBLES THE SAVING GRACE!

Amid all the doom and gloom, there is one regard in which Alli has made quantifiable strides – dribbling.

At least, his dribbling success has improved (for the most part!). He used to attempt to run with the ball more often, with 4.4 dribbles per 90 minutes in 2016-17, which dropped to 3.4 last season.

But his success rate has climbed from 29 per cent in his first season, peaking at 45 in 2018-19 and settling at 40 last time out.

Jose Mourinho is frustrated he cannot call on Dele Alli for Tottenham's big clash with Manchester United on Friday.

England midfielder Alli must serve a one-match ban for a racially insensitive social media post he made in February, forcing him to miss Spurs' first game since the Premier League returned.

A video on Snapchat showed Alli in an airport mocking an Asian man in reference to coronavirus, before the lockdown. Alli said he videoed the man because he was coughing, not because of his ethnicity and admitted he made an "extremely poorly judged joke".

According to Mourinho, others have avoided punishment despite committing more serious misconduct during the pandemic.

Mourinho said in a news conference, held by video link on Thursday: "I feel very, very sorry that Dele is not playing. He is a player that works so, so hard during all this period and he's really frustrated that he cannot play the first match.

"I don't want to say much more than I don't think he deserves a one-match ban compared with wrong behaviours at much bigger dimensions that happened during this period without any consequences.”

The video posted by Alli showed him wearing a protective facemask in an airport and was entitled "Corona whattt, please listen with volume". It cut to the gentleman, who appeared to be unaware he was being filmed, before panning to a bottle of antiseptic handwash.

Underneath, a caption read: "This virus gunna have to be quicker than that to catch me."

The 24-year-old deleted the video and posted an apology to the Chinese social media network Weibo.

Mourinho, who is preparing to face his former club, can recall England captain Harry Kane after a long injury lay-off, and that may allay the blow of losing Alli.

Asked how Tottenham would shape up without Alli, Mourinho said: “How are we going to play? I’m not going to tell you.”

Lionel Messi is reportedly set to re-sign with Barcelona.

The Argentina star is out of contract at Camp Nou next year, but is seemingly set to extend his stay with the LaLiga giants a little longer.

Messi, 32, has spent his entire professional career at Barcelona – and he may yet end up a one-club player.

 

TOP STORY – MESSI TO EXTEND BARCELONA CONTRACT UNTIL 2023

Messi will extend his contract at Barcelona until 2023, according to Mundo Deportivo.

The report says the forward will get to decide if he wants to leave the club before then.

Messi is enjoying another fine season with Barcelona, scoring 26 goals in 33 games in all competitions.

ROUND-UP

- Tottenham want to hold onto their stars. The Telegraph reports chairman Daniel Levy is eager to keep Spurs' best players, including Harry Kane – who has been linked to Real Madrid – and Dele Alli and Son Heung-min.

- It remains to be seen if Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will stay at Arsenal. CalcioMercato reports the forward – out of contract until 2021 – is open to a move to Inter, but the Gabon international is not among the Serie A club's top choices if they need to replace Lautaro Martinez, who is wanted by Barcelona.

- Madrid are reportedly eager to sign Rennes midfielder Eduardo Camavinga. But Sport says the Ligue 1 club are working to extend the the 17-year-old's contract, with his deal running until 2022.

- Liverpool could be set to make changes. The Sun reports Xherdan Shaqiri, Divock Origi and Dejan Lovren could make exits, while Marko Grujic and Harry Wilson may leave on permanent deals. It also says Liverpool are set to give Naby Keita one more season to prove his worth.

- Borussia Dortmund seem some way off landing Birmingham City teenager Jude Bellingham. Bild reports the Bundesliga club have offered just a little more than €20million (£17.9m) for Bellingham, who reportedly has a release clause of €35m (£31.4m).

- Empoli midfielder Samuele Ricci is reportedly catching the eye. CalcioMercato says Milan have kept an eye on the 18-year-old, while Napoli and Borussia Dortmund are also said to be interested.

Tottenham and England midfielder Dele Alli has been handed a one-match ban for a racially insensitive social media post, the Football Association (FA) has announced.

Alli was charged by the FA in February over a Snapchat post that showed him in an airport mocking an Asian man in reference to coronavirus.

The video showed Alli wearing a protective facemask in an airport and was entitled ,"Corona whattt, please listen with volume". It cut to the gentleman, who appeared to be unaware he was being filmed, before panning to a bottle of antiseptic handwash.

Underneath, a caption read: "This virus gunna have to be quicker than that to catch me."

The 24-year-old deleted the video and posted an apology to the Chinese social media network Weibo.

He denied his initial post was in breach of FA regulations, and as detailed in the written reasons, Alli said he videoed the man because he was coughing, not because of his ethnicity.

However, his ban means he will now be absent when Tottenham resume their Premier League campaign at home to Manchester United next week.

Alli must also pay a £50,000 fine and undertake an education course after the governing body found his actions to be "insulting and/or improper and/or brought the game into disrepute" under FA Rule E3 (1).

It additionally constituted an "aggravated breach" in line with the second sub section of that rule, because "It included a reference, whether express or implied, to race and/or colour and /or ethnic origin and/or nationality".

"It was not the FA’s case that Dele Alli was a racist," the FA's written reasons from the case read. " The FA’s case was that 'without sufficient thought', the player shared a video that depicted an 'unacceptable racist stereotype' in a misguided attempt at humour." 

In a statement posted on Tottenham's official website, Alli said: "In response to the FA decision, I would like to apologise again for any offence caused by my behaviour.

"It was an extremely poorly judged joke about a virus that has now affected us more than we could ever have imagined. I’m grateful that the FA has confirmed that my actions were not racist because I despise racism of any kind. We all need to be mindful of the words and actions we use and how they can be perceived by others."

Alli's punishment is identical to the one the FA handed to Bernardo Silva last year, when the Manchester City playmaker posted a tweet that compared team-mate Benjamin Mendy to a logo produced by Conguitos, a Spanish confectionary brand.

Conguitos' branding has been criticised for having racist connotations.

Paulo Dybala has revealed he is still not 100 per cent fit after overcoming coronavirus - but he is relishing the return of Serie A all the same.

The Juventus forward confirmed in March that he and girlfriend Oriana Sabatini had tested positive for COVID-19, by which time football in Italy had been suspended due to the pandemic.

Dybala had to isolate for over a month before Juve announced he had returned two negative tests on May 6, though he is still not yet in peak condition following his illness.

Having gone up against Tottenham's Dele Alli in FIFA 20 as part of a charity event organised by Gamers Without Borders, the Argentina international declared his delight at the upcoming resumption to the 2019-20 campaign.

"I had coronavirus, but I feel much better now," Dybala said during the Instagram Live transmission.

"I am still not quite at 100 per cent, but I'm pretty good. We've started training again and football is coming back, so soon we will be able to do what we love the most.

"I hope we can have fun and entertain.

"I think it will be useful because we will have many consecutive football matches, and people like us who love this wonderful sport will have the opportunity to watch a different game every day."

Argentinian Dybala defeated Alli while playing as Liverpool, even singing the Anfield club's anthem 'You'll Never Walk Alone' midway through the online game with the England midfielder.

As for the real action, leaders Juve - who sit one point clear of nearest rivals Lazio - restart their Serie A campaign with a trip to Bologna on June 22.

Before then, Juventus have the second leg of their Coppa Italia semi-final against Milan, which takes place in Turin on June 12. The first meeting between the teams finished in a 1-1 draw.

The 2019-20 Premier League campaign has at last been given a date from which to resume.

The competition, suspended in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, will return from June 17 and, all being well, be played to its conclusion.

The disruption came with Liverpool just two wins away from a first league title in 30 years, while Manchester United had been improving in pursuit of Champions League qualification.

With the help of Opta, we take a look at the most interesting facts relating to England's 'Big Six' and their campaigns so far.


LIVERPOOL

- Jurgen Klopp's side are top of the pile but do not look as defensively solid as they did in the 2018-19 season. Liverpool have conceded 21 times in the league this term, just one goal fewer than in their entire previous 38-game campaign.

- Roberto Firmino finally ended a long wait for an Anfield goal against Atletico Madrid in March. It was his first home Liverpool strike in 20 games in all competitions since netting against Porto in April 2019, 337 days earlier.

- The Reds were just starting to wobble slightly. With the defeat at home to Atletico, Liverpool had lost four of their past six matches in all competitions – as many defeats as in their previous 67 games.


MANCHESTER CITY

- Manchester City have lost seven Premier League games this season, one more than in their previous two campaigns combined.

- Heading into the break, Sergio Aguero had scored 180 Premier League goals for Manchester City. Only Wayne Rooney – 183 for United – has scored more for a single team in the competition's history, with Aguero passing Thierry Henry – 175 for Arsenal – earlier this term.

- Kevin De Bruyne is the first player to register 15 or more assists in three different Premier League seasons. Only Cesc Fabregas had previously done so in more than one campaign.


CHELSEA

- Chelsea have lost five Premier League home games already this season. Only in 1994-95 – seven times – have they been beaten more often at Stamford Bridge.

- The Blues are also winless away from home in the league in 2020, drawing three and losing one of their four matches. They last endured a longer such run in the 2015-16 season, failing to taste victory over seven straight away trips.

- Frank Lampard has been reliant on homegrown talent this season. Only Leicester City (31) and Southampton (24) have more goals from English players than Chelsea's 21 – level with United.


MANCHESTER UNITED

- United are unbeaten in 11 in all competitions, but their points return of 45 is still their lowest through 29 games of a Premier League season.

- Bruno Fernandes inspired their change in fortunes, though, and he has been involved in more Premier League goals (five – two goals, three assists) since his February 1 debut than any other player.

- At 25 years and 86 days old, United have the youngest average starting XI in the Premier League this season.


TOTTENHAM

- No side have kept fewer clean sheets in the Premier League than Tottenham's four this season. The last time they kept so few in the first 29 matches of a campaign was in 2006-07 (also four).

- Spurs had been missing Harry Kane (131.18 minutes per goal), Son Heung-min (152.31 mins per goal) and January signing Steven Bergwijn (280.5 mins per goal) through injury. Dele Alli has the best minutes per goal ratio – 298 – among the rest of the squad in all competitions this season. Perhaps the break may have done them some good...


ARSENAL

- Arsenal have drawn 13 Premier League games this season – already their highest such tally since 17 in 1993-94.

- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's 17 goals have been worth 16 points to Arsenal this season. Only Sadio Mane's 14 goals have been worth more (18 points) to a single club.

Dele Alli expressed his gratitude for the messages of support he has received after being assaulted by burglars on Wednesday.

The Tottenham star was struck in the face and reportedly held at knifepoint during the incident, which took place at his home in Barnet, where Alli, his brother, their two partners and a friend are staying.

Items of jewellery were among the items stolen by two intruders, who then fled the scene.

In a post on Twitter, Alli wrote: "Thank you for all the messages. Horrible experience but we're all okay now. Appreciate the support."

Earlier a Met Police statement said: "Police were called at approximately 00:35hrs on Wednesday, 13 May to reports of a robbery at a residential address in Barnet.

"Two males gained entry to the property and stole items of jewellery, including watches, before fleeing.

"Two male occupants at the property suffered minor facial injuries after being assaulted. They did not require hospital treatment."

Dele Alli is taking it upon himself to help Tottenham's youngsters navigate their way through the difficulties of life under lockdown.

The spread of the coronavirus has led to tight restrictions in many countries, with social distancing measures effectively confining many to their homes.

With sport across the globe on hold and daily life so severely disrupted, Alli is trying to do his bit to help his more youthful team-mates.

"As a more experienced player, I've been speaking to the younger lads and just making sure they are alright," he told Sky Sports.

"Even for myself, speaking to other people and trying to make sure I'm not in my little bubble here and that I reach out and communicate with other people.

"No one has been in this situation before, it's tough for everyone to deal with, everyone is in the same boat.

"I think it is great that people are using social media and different platforms to find ways to try and help anyway they can."

The restrictions were in place over Alli's 24th birthday earlier this month and he shared a social media post showing some rather subdued celebrations in isolation.

But the England international has been able to stay in touch with the Spurs squad via regular videoconference training sessions involving the whole team.

"Being stuck at home on your birthday isn't the most ideal thing, but I made as much fun of it as I could. It was a little bit of fun, I tried to keep it light-hearted," he said.

"We've been doing a Zoom session every morning at 11 o'clock, which is good because it keeps us in a routine.

"You have to get up early, eat well and do those sessions, which have been tough but also good as you get to see the boys every day."

The 2019-20 Premier League campaign has been suspended at least until April 3 amid the coronavirus pandemic.

There have been 1,372 confirmed cases of the virus and 35 deaths in the United Kingdom, prompting a pause in the football season.

The disruption comes with Liverpool just two wins away from a first league title in 30 years, while Manchester United are improving in pursuit of Champions League qualification.

With the help of Opta, we take a look at the most interesting facts relating to England's 'Big Six' and their campaigns so far.


LIVERPOOL

- Jurgen Klopp's side are top of the pile but do not look as defensively solid as they did in the 2018-19 season. Liverpool have conceded 21 times in the league so far this term, just one goal fewer than in their entire previous 38-game campaign.

- Roberto Firmino finally ended a long wait for an Anfield goal against Atletico Madrid this week. It was his first home Liverpool strike in 20 games in all competitions since netting against Porto in April 2019, 337 days earlier.

- The Reds were just starting to wobble slightly. With the reverse at home to Atletico, Liverpool have lost four of their past six matches in all competitions – as many defeats as in their previous 67 games.


MANCHESTER CITY

- Manchester City have lost seven Premier League games this season, one more than they had in their previous two campaigns combined.

- Heading into the break, Sergio Aguero had scored 180 Premier League goals for Manchester City. Only Wayne Rooney - 183 for United - has scored more for a single team in the competition's history, with Aguero passing Thierry Henry - 175 for Arsenal - earlier this term.

- Kevin De Bruyne has become the first player to register 15 or more assists in three different Premier League seasons. Only Cesc Fabregas had previously done so in more than one campaign.


CHELSEA

- Chelsea have lost five Premier League home games already this season. Only in 1994-95 - seven times - have they been beaten more often at Stamford Bridge.

- The Blues are also still winless away from home in the league in 2020, drawing three and losing one of their four matches. They last endured a longer such run in the 2015-16 season, failing to taste victory over seven straight away trips.

- Frank Lampard has been reliant on homegrown talent this season. Only Leicester City (31) and Southampton (24) have more goals from English players than Chelsea's 21 - level with United.


MANCHESTER UNITED

- United are unbeaten in 11 in all competitions, but their points return of 45 is still their lowest through 29 games of a Premier League season.

- Bruno Fernandes has inspired their change in fortunes, though, and he has been involved in more Premier League goals (five - two goals, three assists) since his February 1 debut than any other player.

- At 25 years and 86 days old, United have the youngest average starting XI in the Premier League this season.


TOTTENHAM

- No side have kept fewer clean sheets in the Premier League than Tottenham's four this season. The last time they kept so few in the first 29 matches of a campaign was in 2006-07 (also four).

- Spurs are missing Harry Kane (131.18 minutes per goal), Son Heung-min (152.31 mins per goal) and now January signing Steven Bergwijn (280.5 mins per goal) through injury. Dele Alli has the best minutes per goal ratio - 298 - among the rest of the squad in all competitions this season.


ARSENAL

- Arsenal have drawn 13 Premier League games this season - already their highest such tally since 17 in 1993-94.

- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang's 17 goals have been worth 16 points to Arsenal this season. Only Sadio Mane's 14 goals have been worth more (18 points) to a single club.

Jose Mourinho does not expect Steven Bergwijn to play for Tottenham again this season, but he still believes his side can recover their Champions League tie against RB Leipzig.

Spurs revealed on Monday that Bergwijn had suffered a "significant" sprain to his left knee during Saturday's 1-1 draw at Burnley.

The injury further limits Tottenham's attacking options, with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min already out until the closing weeks of the campaign.

Left-back Ben Davies will not be available against Leipzig either, with Mourinho's men trailling 1-0 after the first leg at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

The head coach still has hope heading to Red Bull Arena, however.

Reflecting on Spurs' latest injury misfortune at his pre-match media conference, Mourinho said: "I can believe it.

"Ben [will be] one week, two weeks. With Steven, I don't expect him to play again this season.

"We're used to it. I'd say we were psychologically more down with the other injuries, because when you've got four or five injuries, what's six or seven?

"We are losing 1-0 at half-time. We were losing 1-0 at half-time two days ago [against Burnley]. It's something that's happened to us a few times this season.

"You ask me how can you score two goals without Kane, Son or Bergwijn, but there are many ways to score goals.

"A Leipzig player could even do what Antonio Rudiger did and score for us [an own goal in Chelsea's 2-1 win]."

Defeat would end Tottenham's hopes of silverware for another season, having exited the FA Cup last week, but Mourinho is confident he will deliver success during his tenure.

"I believe that Tottenham is not going to be my only club without silverware," he said. "I won at every club and I believe I'm going to do it at Tottenham."

Dele Alli acknowledged the blow of losing Bergwijn, but he is adamant Spurs cannot feel sorry for themselves.

"I think obviously firstly it's difficult to see Steve get injured, a new guy and a top guy," said the England international.

"I've shown that I like scoring goals, although it's probably not my most natural position. But we can't just get our violins out. We need to step up."

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