Tottenham star warned he needs a big performance vs Chelsea to cement World Cup place

Tottenham star Dele Alli has been warned by Arsenal legend Paul Merson that he needs a big game against Chelsea if he is to work his way back into contention for a regular place in England’s World Cup squad.

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The 21-year-old has been in immense form for Spurs for most of his time with the club, becoming one of the finest attacking midfield players in Europe on his day and an England regular.

However, his form has taken a noticeable dip in the second half of this season and Merson now has his doubts over whether Gareth Southgate will necessarily make him a starter for the Three Lions at the World Cup this summer.

The pundit believes Alli now needs to put in a big-game performance for Tottenham against Chelsea this weekend to boost his chances and show what kind of player he can be.

Despite taking the Premier League by storm when he arrived, Alli now looks to have lost his spark and Merson has called on him to learn from greats such as Ryan Giggs and Frank Lampard, as well as Liverpool star Mohamed Salah at the moment, to maintain his consistency at this level.

‘You have to prove you’re not a one-season wonder, that you can do it year after year,’ Merson told the Daily Star.

Gareth Southgate explains Dele Alli absence against Italy

Dele Alli has not been at his best for Tottenham recently

‘Alli should be looking at people like Frank Lampard and Ryan Giggs, who kept on producing the goods season after season.

‘His form has dipped and if he isn’t scoring goals – which he isn’t – I don’t know what he’s bringing to the table any more. He’s getting found out.

‘Heung-Min Son is more important to Spurs than Alli at the moment while Jesse Lingard has taken over from him for England.

‘Southgate is right to say he has work to do because he’s not starting for England at the World Cup playing like this.

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‘Alli should watch some videos of Mo Salah and study how he runs off the ball.

‘I think he’s got his work cut out getting in that England team. He was a shoo-in not so long ago but maybe after he got banned for that finger signal in the ref’s direction at Wembley, Gareth started looking for alternatives.’

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