Tottenham manager Antonio Conte has admitted the club is now “paying” for hiring errors made during Mauricio Pochettino’s tenure.
Pochettino built a strong Tottenham squad that has grown in stature as his tenure at the club progressed. While he didn’t win any titles in the end, Tottenham came close to the Premier League title.
They also reached the Champions League final led by the likes of Dele Alli, Son Heung-min and Harry Kane.
When Pochettino’s Spurs finished second in the 2016-2017 Premier League table, Chelsea – led by Conte at the time – edged out the top of the table by seven points.
As such, the Italian was a keen observer of his managerial rival. Now that he’s in the Tottenham seat, he has pondered why the club has fallen behind since their exit in the European Cup final in 2019.
Indeed, since Pochettino’s dismissal in November 2019, Jose Mourinho and As Nuno Espirito Santo came and went. However, the club failed to keep pace with Pochettino’s heights.
“The club, in years past, has been slipping,” Conte Tell Sky Sports News. “If you compare Tottenham when I was at Chelsea, Tottenham were very, very competitive, and they were a really strong team.
“And I think for the sake of losing important players or one of them getting older and then changing the generation, I think Tottenham are now paying a little bit of that.
“Now we have to create, let’s start over. To think we have to make a solid base and then build. Because if we don’t have a solid base, it’s impossible to build something important.”
“I think this is the right moment to make a solid foundation and then start building. To come back to fight for something as important as [in] the past.”
Conte has already had highs and lows since taking over at Tottenham. The win against Leeds showed grit and determination.
However, last Thursday’s Europa League defeat to Moura was a reality check. In fact, after that, Conte admitted the result Really make him realize What is the scale of the challenge he faces at Tottenham.
Conte admits to Tottenham’s big challenge
Conte added when talking to Sky Sports News: “I think it should be our goal but that goal should include everyone – the club and the players. I think also our fans.
“I understand that they get impatient at times but I repeat that I am here to put myself completely with Tottenham and work 24 hours for this club because that is a huge challenge for me – perhaps the best big challenge, in terms of the difficulty – about the position we started.”
Tottenham did not play on Sunday after their match with Burnley was postponed due to snow.
However, their slate of crowded games in December begins with Thursday’s game against Brentford.