x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 20 August 2017

While Jonjo Shelvey sees red, Dele Alli happy to 'keep cool' as Spurs win away at Newcastle

  • Tottenham manager Pochettino praises man-of-the-match Walker-Peters
  • Newcastle manager Benitez questions why Kane wasn't shown a red card

Newcastle United’s Jonjo Shelvey reacts after stamping on Tottenham's Dele Alli. Lee Smith / Reuters
Newcastle United’s Jonjo Shelvey reacts after stamping on Tottenham's Dele Alli. Lee Smith / Reuters

Dele Alli was determined to keep cool to avoid playing into Newcastle United's hands as Tottenham Hotspur opened their Premier League campaign with a 2-0 victory at St James' Park.

While Alli focused on the task at hand, the England midfielder was involved in the pivotal incident of the match when his ankle was stood on by Jonjo Shelvey three minutes into the second half.

Referee Andre Marriner did not hesitate to show Shelvey a straight red and Alli had the last laugh as he opened the scoring just after the hour mark before Ben Davies made sure of the win in the 70th minute.

Alli, though, has been rebuked in the past after letting his temper get the better of him so he had a degree of sympathy for Shelvey.

 

Newcastle United’s Jonjo Shelvey stamps on Tottenham's Dele Alli. Lee Smith / Reuters
Newcastle United’s Jonjo Shelvey stamps on Tottenham's Dele Alli. Lee Smith / Reuters

 

He told Sky Sports: "It's one of those things but he's a great player and I'm sure he's going to be disappointed.

"I've been caught out a couple of times for my temper but it's something I like to keep to my game.

"It was a game where we had to keep our cool, we didn't want to get too heated up and get brought into what they wanted us to do, which was make it more of a physical game and a battle than a game of football.

"It was important that we just kept the ball moving, I don't think there was any need to react today. I was happy with the performance and the win."

 

 

 

Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino handed a debut to Kyle Walker-Peters, curiously a direct replacement for Kyle Walker, who moved to Manchester City in the off-season.

Walker-Peters, a World Cup winner with England Under 20s over the summer, said: "Playing here, it's a fantastic stadium and most importantly we got the three points, got a good start in the league.

"I'm happy. I found out [I was playing] yesterday. I was a bit nervy but nerves are good."

 

 

 

Newcastle's afternoon was compounded by injuries to defensive pair Paul Dummett and Florian Lejeune, who limped off the field following a robust challenge from Harry Kane.

While Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez accepted the Shelvey red card, he felt Kane's tackle, for which he received a yellow card, was worse.

He said: "What I would say is [Shelvey] made a mistake. Hopefully he will learn from that.

"He knows he has made a mistake and he has apologised but it changes nothing now.

"Still I would like to see if this is a more dangerous situation than the tackle from behind to Lejeune. What is worse, what is a red card? But it's no excuses because we made a mistake and that's it."