Antonio Conte has been cleared to make his Tottenham managerial debut tonight having had his work permit approved. Spurs appointed the Italian on Tuesday after sacking Nuno Espirito Santo 24 hours earlier.
Conte had actually been a contender to become Jose Mourinho’s permanent successor in the summer but turned down the opportunity to join the north Londoners.
His recent spell at Inter Milan, in which he won Serie A and then quit days later, was still fresh in the memory and he did not want to take up a new role so quickly.
Spurs landed Nuno following a chaotic recruitment process but the Portuguese oversaw a dismal start to the season.
A 3-0 defeat by Manchester United sealed his fate, with the comfortable reverse being his fifth Premier League loss of the campaign after only 10 games. Spurs failed to register a shot on target against the Red Devils.
Nuno also suffered defeats in matches against Crystal Palace, Chelsea, Arsenal and West Ham. His replacement has a difficult task qualifying from the club’s Europa Conference League group after a disappointing loss to Vitesse.
Nevertheless, Conte can set about reaching the knockout rounds of the tournament from the dugout tonight when Spurs face the reverse fixture against the Dutch side.
According to various reports, Conte has had his work permit processed and has been passed to officially start working with the Premier League side.
Players and coaches arriving from foreign countries now need to be granted a Governing Body Endorsement, a points-based system which takes into account several qualifications.
For coaches, these include sporting achievements and the quality of leagues worked in. Given Conte’s experience in Italy and previously England with Chelsea, he passed with flying colours.
The Lilywhites have three more fixtures to qualify for the next stage of the tournament. From their trio of games so far, they have won, drawn and been beaten.
“I am extremely happy to return to coaching, and to do so at a Premier League club that has the ambition to be a protagonist again,” Conte said following his appointment.
“Tottenham Hotspur has state-of-the-art facilities and one of the best stadiums in the world.
“I can’t wait to start working to convey to the team and the fans the passion, mentality and determination that have always distinguished me, as a player and as a coach.
“Last summer our union did not happen because the end of my relationship with Inter was still too recent and emotionally too involved with the end of the season, so I felt that it wasn’t yet the right time to return to coaching.
“But the contagious enthusiasm and determination of Daniel Levy in wanting to entrust me with this task had already hit the mark. Now that the opportunity has returned, I have chosen to take it with great conviction.”
Published at Thu, 04 Nov 2021 09:52:00 +0000