Antonio Conte: In profile
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Antonio Conte has promised to improve the players at his disposal following his first game in charge of Tottenham. Spurs won a chaotic match against Vitesse 3-2 in the Europa Conference League on Thursday night – and the performance left plenty for Conte to ponder.
The Italian was announced as Spurs new manager on Tuesday – just a day after Nuno Espirito Santo was sacked.
The former Juventus, Chelsea and Inter Milan manager therefore had just two days to work with his players before the visit of the Dutch side.
In many ways the match was indicative of Spurs’ recent form, with the hosts racing into a 3-0 lead thanks to Son Heung-min, Lucas Moura and an own goal, only to concede twice to let Vitesse back into the game.
Tottenham held on to pick up a win in Group G, but Cristian Romero was sent off in a frenetic second half which saw two visiting players also dismissed.
It was Conte’s first match since securing the Serie A title with Inter last season and the 52-year-old was asked post-match whether Spurs were in a better or worse position than his old team.
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“In this moment, it’s impossible to have this comparison,” Conte said.
“In Inter Milan, I had a finished product after two years. I worked there. For sure in two years many players improved a lot.
“I am sure if I have time to work with these players, if I have time, I am sure that I we have a lot of space for improvement for every single player.
“For sure, if you improve every single player, it means the whole team becomes stronger. We need to do this.
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“We need to find time to work. This is the real problem in this moment. Also because we need to work on many aspects.
“If I want to see on the pitch my team, I know I need time, but at the same time, today in a part of the game I have seen what we tried, what we prepared, in these two days.
“We did good things but at the same time we did things that we can improve a lot.”
Conte will have his work cut out with Tottenham, who are ninth in the Premier League having taken just 15 points from their opening 10 matches.
The Italian’s first league game in charge will come on Sunday at Goodison Park, with Spurs facing Everton at 2pm.
While Conte will be expected to improve the players currently on the books, reports have suggested he is already eyeing new arrivals in the January transfer window.
According The Times, Conte has asked sporting director Fabio Paratici to raid Inter for young duo Alessandro Bastoni and Nicolo Barella.
Meanwhile, AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie and Fiorentina striker Dusan Vlahovic are also being considered as possible mid-season signings.
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