Tottenham: Lloris plays down fears over Conte’s early exit


Ottenham captain Hugo Lloris has played down fears over Antonio Conte’s commitment to the club, saying the head coach is not one to ‘give up under any circumstances’.

Spurs’ rising form continued last night as they recovered from Saturday’s loss to Manchester United with a 2-0 victory over Brighton, closing the gap to fourth-placed Arsenal to three points.

Conte’s mood has tended to fluctuate depending on his team’s results and on the eve of the game at the Amex he dropped another suggestion that he could walk away this summer, saying he would “would stop” if chairman Daniel Levy or general manager Fabio Paratici did not share his “vision”.

Lloris says the team understands and shares Conte’s frustration with their inconsistent form, but insists the players and coaching staff believe Spurs are steadily improving.

“After four months we are starting to know each other well, I think Antonio shows a lot of passion and he does his job with a lot of emotion,” Lloris said. “At times, we can understand his frustration. The players too, we have this frustration but we continue, we continue to work.

Antonio Conte has hinted he could leave Tottenham if his ambition doesn’t match the club

/ Pennsylvania

“Antonio and his team have delivered their best from day one and they are not the type to give up under any circumstances.

“In the Premier League you struggle but we – everyone – feel an improvement. We really feel the path and the direction we want to take as a team and I think game after game we want to continue to improve for the chance to compete for the final race.

Conte challenged his players to finish in the top four and a comfortable win on the south coast, sealed by goals from Cristian Romero and record-breaking Harry Kane, closed the gap to Arsenal, who lost 2-0 to Liverpool, and moved Spurs. tied on 48 points with Sunday opponents West Ham.

No less than seven times since the start of the year, Spurs have chained wins with frustrating defeats, and Lloris has put the pressure on this weekend’s ‘massive’ derby, claiming he is potentially decisive in the race for Champions League football.

“It’s clear: West Ham are going to be huge for us and could make the difference for the final race,” added Lloris. “When we started this week we had a clear objective with Brighton away and West Ham at home to take maximum points to be close to the European places.

“It’s important to keep your feet on the ground and move forward game after game, but I definitely feel the improvement in the team, even with the loss to United.

“After the game there was frustration, obviously, but there was a real feeling that we are clearly showing a direction in the way we play football – and again last night. It’s now been a few games in a row that we grow in terms of maturity and that we grow in terms of good feelings.

“We had some disappointments, but I think that’s part of the process. Sunday is huge for Spurs if we want to be in the right place for the final run and keep our chance, keep our hopes for a solid finish.

Hugo Lloris doesn’t believe Conte or his team will quit their job at Spurs

/ Action images via Reuters

Kane raced on a pass from the excellent Rodrigo Bentancur to complete a counterattack for his 95th Premier League away goal, more than any other player in the competition’s history and in 104 fewer appearances than Wayne Rooney, second.

He also overtook Frank Lampard as the Premier League’s fifth-highest goalscorer, with 178, as he continues to chip away at Alan Shearer’s record.

Romero deflected Dejan Kulusevski’s shot home in the first half to put Spurs on their way against the struggling Seagulls, who have now lost six on the spin.

Afterwards, Conte also turned his attention to Sunday saying: “We will have a crucial game against West Ham. They have the same goal and we are talking about a team that last season arrived before us, they are playing the Europa League. Getting three points on Sunday will be very important to continue to hope for fourth place.

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