Tottenham Hotspur have announced the departure of manager Antonio Conte on “mutual agreement”. The Italian leaves after only 16 months in charge in North London, having replaced Nuno Espirito Santo in November 2021.
Conte oversaw a quick turnaround in fortunes, taking Tottenham back into the Champions League. As the 53-year-old was able to make Spurs finish at the place 4th in the 2021/22 Premier League campaign.
But the Premier League and Serie A champion has been unable to end Tottenham’s trophy drought. This record for the London club now stands at 15 years since winning the EFL Cup in 2007-08.
Before to the international break, Spurs let a two-goal lead slip in a 3-3 draw with Southampton. This prompted Conte to harshly criticise his players in the post-game press conference.
The Italian described his players as “selfish” and appeared to criticise the club’s owners. While he would have left anyway when his contract would have ended this summer, Levy was compelled to act.
Thus, the Lilywhites will be led by acting head coach Cristian Stellini and assistant head coach Ryan Mason until the end of the season.
Tottenham statement on departure of Conte
Tottenham issued a quick, direct statement:
“We can announce that Head Coach Antonio Conte has left the Club by mutual agreement.”
“We achieved Champions League qualification in Antonio’s first season at the Club. We thank Antonio for his contribution and wish him well for the future. Cristian Stellini will take the team as Acting Head Coach for the remainder of the season, along with Ryan Mason as Assistant Head Coach.”
Chairman Levy also issued a short statement, however there was no mention of Conte from the Tottenham chief, who stated:
“We have 10 Premier League games remaining and we have a fight on our hands for a Champions League place.”
“We all need to pull together. Everyone has to step up to ensure the highest possible finish for our Club and amazing, loyal supporters.”
Conte leaves Tottenham having won 41, drawn 12 and lost 23 of his 76 games as manager, despite handing the reins over to interim head coach Stellini at various periods during a turbulent 2022-23 season.
The former Chelsea and Serie A manager lost coaching partner Gian Piero Ventrone to leukaemia last October, and good buddy Gianluca Vialli died from cancer in January at the age of 58.
Conte faced his own health issues following his two bereavements, undergoing gallbladder removal surgery at the end of January after enduring significant abdominal discomfort.
Tottenham were eliminated from the FA Cup and Champions League earlier this month while alternating between Stellini and Conte, and a number of names are reported to be on Levy’s shortlist for the summer.
Julian Nagelsmann, who was recently fired by Bayern Munich, is thought to be a frontrunner for the post, along with Luis Enrique and former Tottenham Hotspur head coach Mauricio Pochettino.
Conte leaves Tottenham fourth in the Premier League table, two points ahead of Newcastle United while having played two more games, and Stellini’s first game as acting head coach is away to Everton on April 3.
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