football

Antonio Conte sends Daniel Levy pointed transfer message after Chelsea defeat


Tottenham boss Antonio Conte suffered defeat for the first time since his appointment, with goals from Hakim Ziyech and Thiago Silva condemning Spurs to a 2-0 defeat at Stamford Bridge

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In pictures: Chelsea v Tottenham

Antonio Conte admitted his Tottenham squad are still some way off being able to compete with the Premier League ’s best after yet another defeat to Chelsea.

The Italian suffered a Premier League defeat for the first time, with goals from Hakim Ziyech and Thiago Silva ensuring he endured a miserable return to Stamford Bridge.

Chelsea are now 11 points clear of their London rivals, although postponements mean they have played four extra games.

Conte is yet to seal his first signing since replacing Nuno Espirito Santo and has suggested that the strength in depth at his disposal is considerably less than their top four rivals.

He said: “I think that in the three games against Chelsea I think today was for me, for the effort in the game, I liked it maybe and also the second half in the second leg of the Carabao Cup we played a good game.

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Tottenham suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Chelsea
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“We are improving to play against Chelsea but in this moment it’s very difficult to face this type of squad, not team, because they don’t have 11 players, they have 22 or 23 players of an important level.

Tottenham have been extensively linked with Wolves winger Adama Traore, with speculation claiming that the two clubs are edging closer to agreement.

However, up to this point, it has been a month of frustration in terms of incomings and Conte, while remaining coy with the press, hinted he has made his stance clear to the Spurs board.

“This is not the right moment to speak in front of media,” Conte told Sky Sports. “The club knows very well what I think and the time we need to close this gap, because it does not take one transfer window to close the gap.

“I think in the last few years, this gap became very, very big and it’s not simple to find a solution. For this reason, I am only focused on the players who work until the end.

“We will see, we have four months to give everything, but if we think we can solve the situation in the transfer market, it is not reality.

“You need many years, for sure we can start and we have to start, because in the last few years the level of the squad decreased instead of improving.”







Antonio Conte claims the gap between Spurs and their top four rivals has grown in recent years
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Sky Sports)

Meanwhile, Dele Alli was one of three players left out of the matchday squad, increasing the possibility that the England international could depart before next Monday’s deadline.

Along with Alli, Tanguy Ndombele and Giovani Lo Celso were omitted, with Conte refusing to state whether they will or won’t remain with the club beyond the end of the month.

“I don’t want to comment on single players. That’s for the club to make the best decision on this aspect for the players to buy or sell.

“There’s also a sporting director and chairman who I have to speak to. They take the last decision. They speak, not me.”

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