Brendan Rodgers: Liverpool were close to signing Tottenham’s Dele Alli
Brendan Rodgers lifted the lid on Liverpool's attempts to sign Tottenham midfielder Dele Alli
Brendan Rodgers has revealed that Liverpool were close to signing Dele Alli before the midfielder joined Tottenham Hotspur.
The newly-fledged England international has been one of the Premier League’s surprise packages this season after the 19-year-old move to Tottenham from MK Dons in a £5m deal in the summer transfer window.
I spent a couple of hours with him in a hotel room and he wanted to come to Liveprool
Alli, who scored his first England goal in a 2-0 victory over France at Wembley in November, has already netted five times and has made three assists in 20 Premier League games for Tottenham so far this season.
However, Rodgers, who was in charge of Liverpool between 2012 and 2015, revealed that he spent several hours in a hotel room talking to Alli but the Reds couldn’t agree a deal with MK Dons.
“I spoke to him with his adoptive parents. Karl Robinson, the manager of MK Dons, drove him down to us,” Rodgers told Sky Sports.
“They played a game on Saturday, we were playing at West Ham on Sunday. We had contact with Dele and we were speaking with Karl. It was all above aboard.
“Karl said he had a player who would be fantastic and he wanted him to go to Liverpool. I spent a couple of hours with him in a hotel room and he wanted to come to Liveprool.
“It was just about getting a deal done with the club but unfortunately it never got done.
“The deal wasn’t done between the two clubs and he went to Tottenham which was disappointing and frustrating.”
Earlier this season, former Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard questioned the five-time European champions’s failure to sign the rising Tottenham star.
“I was surprised, actually disappointed, Liverpool didn’t sign him,” Gerrard told BT Sport.
“I thought he was certainly a player that Liverpool might have tried to go for.
“Especially with me coming to the end, he was a player that I could see playing for Liverpool for 10 or 15 years. He has that ability.”
Alli is expected to face Leicester City in their FA Cup third-round replay at King Power Stadium mid-week.