Conte urges Spurs to strengthen in January transfer window

by Agence France-Presse

Justin Setterfield/Getty Images Sport/Getty

London, October 25, 2022 (AFP) – Antonio Conte has insisted that Tottenham Hotspur are well aware of the need to bring in new players during the January transfer window if the club is to remain competitive in the Premier League.

Spurs play at home to Portuguese side Sporting Lisbon in the Champions League on Wednesday, a match in which a victory for the London side will send them to the round of 16 of Europe’s elite club soccer tournament.

But they come into the game on the back of successive defeats to Manchester United and Newcastle that have left the club third in the Premier League table, five points behind leaders and arch-rivals Arsenal.

Tottenham are also facing a growing injury list that has called into question their ability to sustain a bid for a top-four finish without new signings during the next transfer window.

“I think the club understands very well the importance of bringing in important players, good players, in January,” Spurs manager Conte said at a pre-match news conference on Tuesday. “I am not the person who has to explain this to my club.”

The Italian added: “I repeat that we have to take this great achievement of going to the next round tomorrow and take this opportunity to do it.”

“We want to finish in the best possible way before the World Cup. My priority now is not January but to finish in the best possible way before the World Cup”.

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Conte, 53, has spoken in recent weeks about Tottenham’s path to becoming a true Premier League title contender (Spurs were last crowned English champions in 1961) and also a force to be reckoned with. in Europe.

But he was coy when it was suggested this season could be a big one for Tottenham given that both Chelsea and Manchester United are under new managers Graham Potter and Erik ten Hag.

“We have to focus on the present and try to do our best,” he said. “This season will be more difficult than last season because after the transfer market you have seen that many, many teams have spent a lot.

“This is not the right time to respond. Since November of now and after a year I understood many things. The first moment for me was really difficult to understand.

“Now I get into the world of Tottenham. I understand very well what our situation is, what our position is, what our starting point is, how long our path is to be competitive and fight for something important. Now yes, my knowledge” . about Tottenham is more complete”.

Cristian Romero (calf) and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg (thigh) missed training on Tuesday after also being sidelined by Newcastle’s loss.

But unlike Dejan Kulusevski (hamstring) and Richarlison (calf), they could still play against Sporting.

“Richarlison and Kulusevski are out, recovering but not yet available,” Conte said.

“Romero and Hojbjerg tomorrow (Wednesday) morning we will see. If there is a chance that they will recover, we will try everything because it is an important game for us.”

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