England footballer Dele Alli has spoken of his “horrible experience” after being punched by armed raiders who stole watches and jewellery from his London home.
The Tottenham midfielder was ordered to hand over valuables after the attack in the early hours of Wednesday morning as he played pool with his brother and his model girlfriend Ruby Mae, the Sun newspaper reported.
The two knife-wielding masked intruders then fled from his home in leafy Hadley Wood, in north-east London, close to the border with Hertfordshire.
They broke in through the back of the house after evading Alli’s security guard, who stays on the premises overnight, the Telegraph newspaper reported.
It comes two months after fellow Tottenham player Jan Vertonghen’s family was robbed at knifepoint while he was away on Champions League duty and warnings over Premier League footballers becoming the “easiest of pickings”.
Alli tweeted: “Thank you for all the messages. Horrible experience but we’re all okay now. Appreciate the support.”
Tottenham said it was “offering support” to the footballer and those isolating with him.
Scotland Yard said no arrests had been made.
Hadley Wood is an affluent suburb with average house prices of around £1.4 million, benefiting from “more rural aspects and close proximity to London”, according to Foxtons.
The estate agents describe it as “a quiet green exclusive family-based residential enclave with attractive large homes surrounded by parklands and green belt”.
Last year former soldier Alex Bomberg, who runs security service Intelligent Protection International, said that footballers had become the “easiest of pickings” for criminal gangs. He told the Telegraph that robbers were increasingly scouring players’ social media accounts as well as the fixture lists for prime times to carry out their raids.
In March, Vertonghen was part of the squad that travelled to Germany for the last-16 second leg with RB Leipzig when four thieves wearing balaclavas raided his home.
They were armed with knives, but Vertonghen’s wife and two children were unharmed.
In November, Ashley Smith was jailed for 10 years after attempting to rob Arsenal duo Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac of luxury watches worth £200,000.
Smith and an accomplice tried to ambush the pair on a stolen moped but were fought off by Bosnian defender Kolasinac.
In December, Crystal Palace defender Mamadou Sakho’s south west London home was targeted by robbers, who reportedly made off with £500,000 in stolen valuables.
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “Police were called at approximately 12.35am on Wednesday, May 13, to reports of a robbery at a residential address.
“Two males gained entry to the property and stole items of jewellery, including watches, before fleeing.
“Two male occupants at the property suffered minor facial injuries after being assaulted. They did not require hospital treatment.”