Dele Alli’s biological mother has claimed she had no idea her son was molested as a child and ‘hasn’t stopped crying’ since the football star’s bombshell interview was released.
During his moving chat with Gary Neville, the former Tottenham, and England midfielder revealed he had been sexually abused by a friend of his birth mum, Denise. Alli said: “At six I was molested by my mum’s friend who was at the house a lot, my mum was an alcoholic, and then…”
The midfielder then had to stop as he was overcome by emotion, with Neville also tearing up. The Manchester United legend patted his knee to console him, to which Alli said “sorry”. Neville replied “don’t be sorry”.
Alli, who is no longer in contact with Denise, added: “So that happened at six. I was sent to Africa [where his biological father lives] to learn discipline, and then I was sent back. Seven I started smoking, eight I started dealing drugs.”
Denise has now reacted to that revelation by insisting she did not know her son was being abused. “I have not been able to stop crying since I heard my son describe the abuse he suffered as a child,” she told The Sun.
“I had no idea he’d been molested. I’m so sorry. It breaks my heart to think that someone I allowed into my house might have betrayed my trust in the worst possible way.
“I cannot put into words how upset I am [that] I no longer have contact with my son – and only hope I’ll have the chance to see him again.”
At the age of 12, Alli was adopted by the family of one of his teammates in the youth ranks at MK Dons.
“I was adopted by an amazing family – I couldn’t have asked for better people to do what they’d done for me. If God created people, it was them,” he said.
“There were a number of times my adopted family and my brother – you know, it makes me sad – they would take me to rooms crying, asking me to just speak to them, tell them what I’m thinking, how I’m feeling, and I just couldn’t do it because I wanted to deal with it by myself.”