Alli signs for same team as Ronaldo
Tottenham’s Dele Alli has signed a contract with the same agency that represents Jose Mourinho, Cristiano Ronaldo and Harry Kane in the latest indication that the young Englishman expects to enter the highest tier of earners in football.
All Alli’s commercial deals will be handled by the Creative Artists Agency (CAA), who have snapped up many of the top clients in European football in recent years.
The England international will be represented by a team led by Matthew O’donohoe, who oversees Ronaldo’s endorsements and those of Mourinho whose portfolio includes Hublot watches, Heineken, Jaguar, BT Sport, Adidas, Lipton Tea and EA Sports.
There has been major competition for the signature of Alli, who is coming to the end of his player representation contract with British agent Rob Segal. In the future, Alli’s adoptive brother Harry Hickford will manage his day-to-day affairs. CAA works closely with Gestifute, the agency run by Jorge Mendes who himself has emerged as the most influential deal-maker in world football over the past decade, brokering Ronaldo’s move to Real Madrid and Mourinho’s various moves.
Alli signed a six-year contract at Spurs one year ago, although his £50,000-per-week salary is likely to be increased with another new deal from the chairman Daniel Levy before the end of the season.
A good performance at the World Cup finals for England next summer could raise his value once again, although Spurs have the security of that long-term contract.
The latest move by Alli and his family is to align the player with an agency that will help him exploit his value as one of the game’s upand-coming stars ahead of the tournament in Russia. Alli already has deals with Adidas and BT Sport.
Alli, perhaps surprisingly, is set to start for Spurs tonight when they host Apoel Nicosia in their final fixture of the Champions League Group H. Regardless of the result, Tottenham will progress as group winners.
Given that, Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino is expected to shuffle his pack with two crucial home Premier League fixtures to come in the next seven days, before a daunting trip to runaway leaders Manchester City on Dec 16.
Spurs’ hopes of somehow overtaking City have been damaged over the course of the past month, during which they have failed to win a single league game. Apoel at home, therefore, will not be high on the manager’s list of priorities.
Nevertheless, Alli will play after missing the club’s first three Champions League fixtures of the campaign due to suspension and the 21-year-old says focus will not be a problem for him.
The match also represents a chance for Alli to move closer towards his best form after only producing in patches so far this term.
He said: “I am very self-critical. In fact I think I am my own biggest critic. I know when I’m not playing well and if it’s not going well for me, it’s important that I keep working hard and try every day to learn and improve.”
The likes of Kane, Christian Eriksen, Eric Dier and Kieran Trippier are all expected to be rested. Fitagain Erik Lamela is unavailable because he was not registered for the Champions League.