Antonio Conte casts fresh doubt on Tottenham’s long-term future as problems mount


Antonio Conte has insisted he will only stay at Tottenham if he feels 100 per cent convinced by the club’s project.

The Italian has long been associated with winning trophies and enjoyed success during spells with Inter Milan, Chelsea and Juventus.

When he was appointed by Spurs at the end of 2021, it was expected the 53-year-old could help the club take the final step to becoming genuine title contenders but, despite an impressive fourth-place finish on the season last, this current campaign has been littered with inconsistent postings.

Conte has repeatedly spoken of the need to be patient and build foundations.

Ahead of Wednesday’s trip to Crystal Palace, he said: “Here I understood that my task was different.

“My task here is to help the club, to build a strong base, to create a base and then try to improve. That’s my task here, that’s my challenge here.

“If you ask me – and the challenge for you – is to win the Premier League, to win the Champions League, that’s not the task here at the moment.

“The task for me is to help the club that I have found. I signed a contract in November 2021 when I found the club in a difficult position for many reasons.

“Now my task, I understood it very well, is to try to help the club to go in the right direction or to come back in the right direction on the choices of the players, on the work, to organize themselves. and create a foundation.

“Now this is my big challenge here. Now if I want to stay here, then I have to accept it. Otherwise, if I don’t want to accept it, I have to go.”

Pressed on how much time he would give to the current project before deciding to move on, Conte accepted that he wouldn’t stay forever.

“At first for me it wasn’t easy. It’s an important experience. I agreed to do it because I found a great club, a modern club and for that reason I’m happy to work here,” Conte insisted.

“My big challenge is this. To continue to work so hard with my staff and the players, to improve the club, to create a solid base.

Won’t plan: Spurs have struggled for consistency this season

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“If I’m happy to continue doing this job and see the result one day I will continue to stay, if I’m not 100% convinced then I can leave my job here.

“It’s a big job that we do together. I know very well what it is and it’s important.”

Given Arsenal’s progress this season and Newcastle’s strong first half, Conte stressed the importance of knowing when to step up the project.

He said: “For now, the most important thing is that the process has started. It is very important.

“Then you can speed up the process or take it step by step. It also depends on many circumstances.”

standard Sport

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