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Dejan Kuluveski makes comical response to Harry Kane’s adulation of Vio after excellent start to life at Spurs.

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LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 20: Dejan Kulusevski of Tottenham Hotspur looks on during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on August 20, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

Dejan Kulusevski joked that Tottenham’s new set-piece coach Gianni Vio ‘has to get a payrise for sure’ – after Harry Kane scored from a corner for the second game running to decide Saturday’s 1-0 win over Wolves.

Tottenham's new set-piece coach Gianni Vio
Kane met Ivan Perisic’s near-post flick for the winner against Wolves after scoring a stoppage-time equaliser from the Croatian’s corner to salvage a point at Chelsea the week before (Photo: Getty Images)

The former Italy, AC Milan, Leeds and Brentford coach was brought in by Antonio Conte this summer to vastly improve the club’s set piece options. He has designed 4,830 different attacking set piece scenarios which he adapts to the players at his disposal and he was lauded at Euro 2020 for his impact as Italy won the tournament.

Kulusevski, who was impressive again on Saturday, says the new Tottenham’s set-piece  coach Gianni Vio has to get a payrise for sure.

“I just told him three times that we have to give him more money,” the 21-year-old said.

“He has to get a payrise for sure! Shoutout to him.

“He’s very important. He makes a difference, like you can see. At the end of the day, we won on a set piece today so we have to keep working on that. It’s not the funnest thing in the world but it makes results.

“It helps a lot. Three games, three goals [from set pieces] I think, so we have to keep listening to him and do what he says. I don’t remember that we scored so many [from set pieces] last season but it’s very important. Now we have to get better. Every time we get a set piece we have to believe we can score.”

The dividends of Tottenham having a new set-piece coach is already showing up.

Spurs scored just eight set-piece goals last season in the Premier League – only Manchester United, Norwich City and Watford scoring fewer – and 13 fewer than champions Manchester City, who scored the most.

Tottenham's new set-piece coach Gianni Vio
Gianni Vio, New Set-Pieces Coach at Tottenham Hotspur talks to Eric Dier during the Tottenham Hotspur training session at Goyang Stadium in South Korea. (Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images)

But, the arrival of Tottenham set piece coach Gianni Vio has been paying off, with Spurs three goals in three so far this campaign, has leveled them with Arsenal on top of the set-piece scoring charts.

We’ve been working on them in training,” Kane said after the Wolves game.

“We see it as a real opportunity to break the deadlock in games and we know how important set-pieces can be in tight games especially.

“We have Gianni (Vio) helping us, for sure the gaffer is involved, all the staff are involved as well. So far so good, but we’ve got to keep it going.”

Tottenham still have a long way to go in defending set-pieces  after conceding the opener in the 2-2 draw at Stamford Bridge directly from a corner.

Spurs shipped ten league goals from set-pieces last season, nine more than league-best City, and will be aiming to become a veteran in scoring and defending set-pieces.

Tottenham are next in action on Saturday, when they host Nottingham Forest.

 

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