Pochettino hails 'top player' Alli

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Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino praised "top player" Dele Alli after the midfielder's goalscoring heroics against Barnsley.

Alli scored a 65th-minute winner to see Spurs past the Championship outfit 1-0 in the third round of the EFL Cup at Wembley on Tuesday.

Pochettino lauded the 21-year-old England international, although the Argentinian said the midfielder was not yet at his best.

"For me, Dele Alli is a top player. He is a key player for us," Pochettino told a news conference.

"I think he helps us by scoring today. I am so happy with him. It's true that everyone can do better, but I am happy.

"It is a period that he needs to find his balance, but I am so happy, his performance was good. He tried and scored and that is fantastic."

Spurs are back in action with a trip to West Ham in the Premier League on Saturday.