By Rory O’Callaghan
Last Updated: 20/12/18 3:10pm
Mauricio Pochettino believes Dele Alli deserves praise for his “mature” reaction to being hit by a bottle in the north London derby on Wednesday.
Alli was struck on the head by the plastic object which was thrown by an Arsenal supporter during the 2-0 win for Spurs in the Carabao Cup quarter-final at the Emirates.
Alli alerted the referee to the incident before gesturing the scoreline to the home fans, and Pochettino believe the England international deserves praise for not going down unnecessarily.
“I think it was an amazing reaction,” Pochettino said, ahead of Sunday’s trip to Everton – live on Sky Sports Premier League.
“In another country the player could be down on the pitch and create a big problem. Dele was so honest, so professional and he behaved really well.
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“Arsenal, the club, must be grateful with him. In a different situation, the player would have gone down and created a massive problem and very difficult to handle for the referee and the club.
“Sometimes people have criticised him in the past over some actions during the game but it is good to praise him now.”
Arsenal have confirmed they have identified the fan who threw the bottle after studying CCTV footage and are working with the Metropolitan Police to apprehend the culprit.
Meanwhile, Sky Sports News understands Alli will face no punishment from the FA for his gesture to the Arsenal supporters.
“He is more mature now but he is still a kid, he is so young,” Pochettino added. “It is normal, he is growing and learning.
“I hate this type of situation and I know Arsenal is going to take responsibility and fix the problem. We need to praise Dele because his behaviour was fantastic.”
Tottenham travel to face Everton at Goodison Park on Sunday, live on Sky Sports Premier League, and Pochettino has been impressed with the Toffees under Marco Silva.
“Everton have a lot of quality players, it is a great squad,” he added. “Marco Silva is doing a fantastic job, he is a very good coach.
“Always in every project when you arrive at a new club you need time. They are doing a very good job, it is going to be very tough to play against Everton.”