Antonio Conte has had a major impact on Tottenham, since his arrival last November. Spurs brought in Dejan Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur during the January window and the impact they had on their new side was more than anyone could have hoped for.
Strengthening Conte’s squad has already begun, before the summer window has even opened, with the signing of Ivan Perisic confirmed on Tuesday. The Italian wants at least six new arrivals this summer and the Croatian is a good start, to increase the size of the squad and add quality.
The biggest achievement for Spurs and the 52-year-old last season was their fourth place finish in the Premier League. The Lilywhites managed to knock Arsenal out of the top four and secure a place in the Champions League next season, providing the club with a boost and making them more attractive for potential new arrivals.
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Despite a battle until the final day of the season, it was Manchester City who won the league title, with Liverpool following just a point behind. Chelsea were 18 points behind Jurgen Klopp’s side, but when they beat Tottenham three times in one month, it was clear that there was still a gap in quality.
The top three teams are who Conte wants to be competing with and Spurs fans are hoping the Italian can be the one to end their 14-year trophy drought. However, Liverpool legend Mark Lawrenson, still thinks the Lilywhites are quite a way off.
“I don’t see anybody for the next couple of years challenging City or Liverpool. Obviously, Chelsea’s sale has gone through now and Tuchel will be given money to spend and improve on what is already a great squad,” he said, speaking on behalf of 888sport.
“Spurs and Arsenal still have quite some way to go before they’re anywhere near to Liverpool or Man City. It will take Newcastle a few years obviously to get to the very top.”
It may be too ambitious to expect Tottenham to challenge for the Premier League title next season, with Conte only making the move to N17 eight months ago. However, what the Italian has already been able to do in such a short time, gives great hope for the future.
Another world-class manager is Sir Alex Ferguson, who found great success during his time at Manchester United. Conte shows his passion both on and off the pitch, with his reactions on the touchline during games and his honesty in press conferences and the latter is something Lawrenson found to be a similar trait in both managers.
“You can just tell that Conte is a proper manager. He has said some strange things along the way but you can tell he is really bright and says things for a reason,” the 64-year-old explained.
“Fergie always said that if you’re playing at the weekend, that Friday press conference is your perfect time to get something across. To make a point. And Conte does that. He makes a point by goading his players to get a reaction.”
This was seen when the Italian gave a very honest press conference after Tottenham’s 1-0 defeat against Burnley at Turf Moor. However that seems to be one of the moments which changed the season for the better, for the Lilywhites.
Despite Lawrenson believing it could take a while for Spurs to be competing with the likes of Liverpool and Man City, he did back Conte’s side to overtake their other Premier League rivals, in the near future.
“He’s made one or two great signings and he’s got two of the best strikers in the world. If he can sort out the rest, defensively, they can be the best of the rest; better than Chelsea, Arsenal or Manchester United.”
Source by Football London