He is one of Italy’s finest managers and one who has enjoyed success in the testing arena of English football. Ultimately, even Antonio Conte couldn’t turn around Spurs as the Premier League side are still looking for their first trophy in 15 years.
Following some outspoken comments criticising his own players in the wake of the 3-3 draw with bottom club Southampton, Conte has gone. It’s among the least surprising pieces of recent football news, but what happens next?
A Successful Project?
Spurs fans will have mixed feelings about Conte’s departure from the club. Those who read between the lines assume that the owners are more concerned about qualifying for the Champions League than winning actual silverware, and to that extent he succeeded.
At the end of the 2021/22 season, Tottenham claimed that fourth UCL slot, but the team have a battle to qualify this term. In the football betting markets, they are priced at 23/10 to finish in the top four. The biggest challenge is expected to come from Newcastle United who are just ahead at 11/10.
Arsenal and Manchester City are expected to finish in the top four as they are both fighting for the title and look a level above everyone else, while Manchester United are priced at short odds for the top four due to the level of performances and consistency they have managed this season. Spurs remain in contention, but the departure of Antonio Conte may have left them with a much tougher task.
In personal terms, this has been a difficult period for Antonio Conte, which has included having to undergo surgery, as a result of which he remained at home in Italy. Against such a personal backdrop, it may have been understandable to see frustration boil over following the team’s display at Southampton.
Those comments have ultimately led to Antonio Conte leaving Tottenham by mutual agreement. There will be no shortage of potential destinations in Italy, but has this unfortunate period dented his managerial reputation?
Premier League Clubs May Steer Clear
At the age of 53, Antonio Conte should have many more years left as a manager. Italy may be his next destination but, as this is a very fluid occupation, he may continue to make several moves before eventually calling it a day.
There is a feeling that his days in England are over. One of the worst crimes that a manager can commit is to lose the dressing room, and Conte’s criticism of his own players sealed his eventual fate. Club owners would, and should, be wary moving forward.
There are other top jobs in Europe that the best managers in the game will seek out. Real Madrid may be seen as an ultimate challenge, while Paris Saint-Germain are still looking for that elusive Champions League trophy.
It’s been a difficult period and one where neither Spurs nor Antonio Conte emerge with much credit. Moving forward, the spell is unlikely to have damaged the manager’s reputation in the long term.
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