Antonio Conte pulled no punches in his furious assessment of Tottenham’s performance following their lackluster draw against Southampton on Saturday.
Spurs squandered a 3-1 lead and shared the points with Saints, who are fighting to avoid Premier League relegation.
Here, Sportsmail looks at the best bits from the Italian manager’s ten-minute rant…
A tough penalty decision to make but at 3-1 up with 15 minutes to go, should your team draw that match?
Punishment, for me, is not punishment. If we discuss punishment it means we don’t want to see another situation. The worst case scenario is what happens on the pitch. What’s going on these past few months, what’s going on in my second season.
This is the right moment to speak because, after this presentation, it is unacceptable. We won 3-1, with control of the game and you are able to concede two goals and take risks, because Fraser also made a fantastic save in one situation. Better to get into trouble. The problem is that we have shown that we are not a team. We were 11 players who went on the pitch. I see selfish players, I see players who don’t want to help each other and don’t put their heart into it.
Antonio Conte did not hold back in his harsh assessment of Spurs and their recent history
The Italian manager cut a somber figure in the press room after the full-time whistle
Before now I prefer to hide this situation and try to speak to improve the spirit, the situation, with many situations. The tactical or technical aspect, it is a situation. The most important thing if you want to be a strong team, if you want to be competitive, if you want to win, is the desire, the fire you have to have in your eyes, in your heart, and you have to show it every moment . In every moment.
If I have to compare last season and this season, we need to improve, but today we are worse in this aspect. When you are not a team, anything can happen, at any moment.
Now the last situation. Don’t forget that in the FA Cup we lost to Sheffield United, who played with young players. With a strong team, we fell out of the FA Cup.
A lot of situations, I repeat, not going to improve. And I’m not talking about the tactical aspect or the technical aspect.
[It’s] about being a team, being a team, being a team. This is the most important thing. To understand that we play for the badge. We have to play to make our fans proud. We have to play to show the desire. The fire in your eyes to win: if you have it, sure, you won’t be out of the FA Cup. Now, you win.
We have to play to make our fans proud, we have to play to show the desire. Here, we have been used to it for a long time. The club has a responsibility for the transfer market, every coach who stayed here has a responsibility. And the players? The players? Where are the players?
In my experience, I can tell you that if you want to be competitive, if you want to fight, you have to improve this aspect. And this aspect, I can tell you, at the moment is really low. And I only see 11 players playing for themselves.
But your future, the uncertainty….
You found an alibi, a different alibi. Try to find a reason for the players. OK, continue to do this, to find an excuse for the players. This is all you do! This is all you do. Sorry for the players.
But the players, maybe, are my future, then we lost confidence, lost the spirit, lost being a team. Sorry. Sorry. Sorry. Try to protect them every time. Bah. Come, come, come. We are professional. The club pays us a lot of money. Players receive money, I receive money, you understand?
Not to find an excuse or not show spirit or a sense of belonging or a sense of responsibility because we show it. For me this is unacceptable because this is the first time in my career to see such a situation. Until now I have not been able to change, not only change, but compared to last season, the situation has worsened.
Why is this happening?
Why? Because they are used to it, they are used to it. They are not playing for something important. They don’t want to play under pressure, they don’t want to play under stress. It’s easy this way.
Tottenham’s story is this. The owner has been there for twenty years and they haven’t won anything but why? The fault is only for the club, or for every manager who stays here. I saw Tottenham’s managers on the bench. You risk disrupting the manager’s figure and protecting a different situation at every moment.
The manager’s comments are unlikely to boost morale during a patchy season
The club’s hierarchy, including chairman Daniel Levy, also found themselves in the firing line
Until now I tried to hide the situation but now, no, because I repeat I don’t want to see what I saw now because it is unacceptable and also unacceptable for the fans. They follow us, pay the ticket and to see the team later to have this kind of performance is unacceptable. We have a lot to think about this.
You saw the fire last week. What has changed?
I said I want to see the fire in their eyes, in their hearts. I want to see the right spirit. Okay. Not just in the training session, on the pitch. Because of this you have to make a difference. And until now I tried to hide the situation but now, there are 10 more games and others think we can compete. Fight what his spirit, this attitude? What? For seventh, eighth, 10th place? I’m not used to this position. I am really disgusted and everyone should take their responsibility.
Not just the club, the manager and the staff. The players need to be involved in this situation because it is time to change this situation if Tottenham want to change. If they want to continue this way, they can change the manager, there are many managers, but the situation cannot change. Believe me.
News/Image Sources: Daily Mail