Transfer window; the threat of Mitrovic; Injury Update
Antonio Conte spoke to the media ahead of Tottenham’s Premier League clash with Fulham on Saturday.
Spurs were held to a frustrating 1-1 draw with London rivals West Ham on Wednesday as they were unable to bring in any further signings before Thursday’s transfer deadline.
Conte was in a chatty mood during his press conference on Friday. Here’s what he had to say.
Are you satisfied with the squad after the transfer window?
“I think we have to understand first that in this transfer window we did what the club could do. And I think we did some good things. But I have to be honest with you because if I see the other teams of the there is still too much distance between the best teams and that is why we have to know that we have just started this process to try to improve the squad.
“In this transfer window we tried to do that and also in January, with Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski. In this transfer window we tried to improve the squad in terms of numbers and quality. is sure to be competitive, to fight to be a title contender, but also to have a place in the Champions League, it takes at least three more transfer windows before progressing and being on the same level as the other greats clubs.”
Will you wait until the January window if the injuries start piling up?
“Of course when you play every three days you risk a lot of injuries and also in the last game we had a problem with Pierre Hojbjerg. When you play so many games in a short time, of course you have to understand that you probably have to. For this reason, it is important to have a strong team to face four competitions.
“I always tell you, now the season is starting for a club like us. We are going to play the Champions League, not the Europa League or the Conference League. The Europa League or the Conference League, you can afford to do big rotations. When you go to the Champions League, you have to leave with a strong team and it is sure that the task is more difficult, but it is a good opportunity for me, for the club, to understand if we miss something thing.
“I repeat, we are going in the right direction for the club’s ability at the moment to invest money. Then you have to be realistic to understand that there are different clubs…clubs that can invest a lot money, other clubs that can invest normal money and of course in the way it is more difficult in this aspect.
“But we want to keep improving. We are working very well, I’m happy to have this group of players, this team, the new players are totally inside the team, inside the dressing room. We We’ve done the right things. But if anyone thinks we’ve finished the situation…we’re a long way from that.”
Do Tottenham have an advantage over other clubs because you finished your business early?
“Honestly, if you sign a £100m or £80m player on the last day, you have a big advantage because that means you’re signing a top player, get it? You can also sign a player for free or in ready and it’s a different situation.
“I want to be very clear. I think we did what we could do and at the right time because the vision was very clear on the money to be spent, about to get the free player on loan because then we have spent money on two players, Richarlison then Bissouma.
“The others were on loan or free but it’s sure to have a vision and to anticipate and to give the coach the possibility to work from the start I think that means that we work very well with a vision. very clear, and not waiting until the last day for a player to come on loan or sign a player with characteristics that are not good for our team.”
Scott Saunders, Graeme Bailey,Toby Cudworth and Harry Symeou bring you a live edition of Talking Transfers deadline day. The team welcomes you Daniel Childs and Julian Lawrence on the show to discuss Chelsea’s late activity, Arsenal’s pursuit of Douglas Luiz, Paris Saint-Germain’s summer signings and more! The show is also available on all audio platforms.
How do you intend to stop Aleksandar Mitrovic?
“I think he’s in an exceptional moment for him. Last season he scored over 40 goals and that was a record. He’s really dangerous because when there’s a ball in the box and you “Find him. He’s strong physically, strong with his head and we’re talking about a very, very good player but Fulham impresses me.
“They are playing very well, with good intensity and they play two games against strong opponents like Liverpool and Arsenal, also in the last game against Brighton, another very good team. They start very well and we have to be very careful.
“For us it’s the third game in six days and for sure the energy, we have to try to check well the energy we use tomorrow and use a lot of brains, not the emotional aspect. Tomorrow will be on the one hand using the brain very well to understand the game because the game will be very difficult, I’m sure.”
What’s the latest from the team?
“About Cuti Romero, he is in the team. He had two training sessions with us after the game against West Ham. Lucas Moura and Gil are still not available for the game against Fulham. Bentancur is fine, he recovered [from concussion] 100 per cent.”