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“very difficult to talk about fourth place, because I’m used to play for other” – Conte laments

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LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 13: Antonio Conte manager of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on February 13, 2022 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Marc Atkins/Getty Images)

Tottenham Hotspur were punished by the visitors on Sunday afternoon as first-half goals by Raul Jimenez and Leander Dendoncker gave Wolverhampton Wanderers a 2-0 away win over Antonio Conte’s sloppy side.

This is the first time since 2009 Conte has suffered three league consecutive defeats as a manager.

Tottenham Hotspur’s Italian head coach Antonio Conte looks dejected on the touchline (Getty Images)

It was a third straight Premier League loss for Spurs, following Wednesday’s 3-2 loss to Southampton.

Tottenham Hotspur has lost twice this past week against  their hopes to finish in the top four are taking a hit.

Tottenham Hotspur has lost twice this past week against clubs they were above in the Premier League standings and at home. Spurs dropped points to Southampton and Wolverhampton Wanderers, and their hopes to finish in the top four are taking a hit.

Spurs now  sit in eighth place, five points away from West Ham United – with three games in hand but have Manchester United, Arsenal, and Wolves ahead of them in the standings.

Speaking to beIN SPORT’s Carrie Brown after the defeat, Conte admitted he is not motivated by just battling to finish fourth.

“For me it’s very difficult to talk about fourth place, Europa League or Conference League, because I am used to playing for other targets,” Conte said.

“I know very well and I’m not stupid, I know we have to fight to try to do our best until the end.”

Conte on Tottenham’s Top 4 ambitions

Speaking to Sky Sports, Conte said: “When you lose two games in a row at home and a previous game against Chelsea, a team that wants to fight for the Champions League is impossible.”

Antonio Conte on Spurs’ mentality

He said: “You can not buy the winning mentality. The winning mentality you get it day-by-day.

Winning mentality means that when you play, you are ready to kill. This is the difference.

Conte cheering his team (Getty Images)

“We are working very hard with the players, and there is a great community, but it is not enough. It is not enough.

“It’s not enough if we want to be competitive. We have to wait and to build, step-by-step.”

Rebuild will take time,Conte calls for patience. 

Tottenham Hotspur has lost twice this past week against clubs they were above in the Premier League standings and at home. Spurs dropped points to Southampton and Wolverhampton Wanderers, and their hopes to finish in the top four are taking a hit.

But, Conte told Sky Sports :

“We know we have to fight to build something important with the situation but it’s important to know the situation. Maybe our fans shouldn’t be disappointed with the defeat – instead they should try and push us and stay behind us.

The players need to find the right atmosphere and feel no pressure about a target that in this moment you can’t reach. I’ve been saying this since my arrival.”

“We need to be realistic and together. Also with our fans. The fans need to understand to have patience, to wait to rebuild again to a situation they were used to in the past. Now the situation has changed, not only with me but with the other coaches.

We are working hard with the players and there is great commitment but it’s not enough if we want to be competitive. We have to wait. Step-by-step. And it’s important to be realistic and very clear” He added.

But, what exactly is success for Tottenham?

It has been over 13 years that Tottenham last won a trophy and the last they could possibly attempt to break the odds was UEFA Champions League final under Mauricio Pochettino.

 Harry Kane looks dejected as he walked past the UCL trophy 🏆

(Getty Images), it resulted in a painful loss and Tottenham haven’t been the same again with the hopes of lifting trophy fading away day- by-day before the appointment of Antonio Conte.

Antonio Conte is a regular name on the team sheet of the best coaches in the world as he has won trophies in any of his stints as head coach. He’s known as a serial winner.

However, It would also help if Conte became a little more realistic.

This job at Tottenham is a very different one. Conte has to work with players who may not be able to carry out his orders. He has to wait for at least another six months to get in new players he wants. He has to try and finish in the top four between now and then to be deemed a success

Top four is a trophy

Fourth is a trophy for Tottenham. Even if he’s used to fighting for other titles, this is the situation he has chosen to be in. He has to embrace it giving the gulf in class of players between Tottenham and the Premiership top sides. 

Antonio Conte needs time

Since his arrival, Conte has turned the season around, and Tottenham made a couple of additions to their squad.

Nonetheless, it still hasn’t been enough for Tottenham to get into the top four. Unless those clubs ahead of them begin to falter, Spurs could miss out on another season without Champions League football.

It really takes time for a club to totally rebuild itself and that is what Spurs need to do right now.

We can only really judge whether or not he’s been a success at the end of the 2022-23 season, when he’s had a full season in charge.

Then, and only then, can we lay an accusing fingers on Antonio Conte.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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