Antonio Conte Tottenham exit gathers pace as boss becomes frontrunner for controversial new role; De Zerbi also being considered
The future of Antonio Conte at Tottenham is far from certain and the Italian is now being linked with a shock managerial position that would cause controversy among one set of fans.
Conte has been at Tottenham since November 2021, when he came in as Nuno Espirito Santo’s replacement. Conte was tasked with getting the north London side back in the Champions League and winning a trophy.
The 53-year-old dragged Spurs into the top four last season. They pipped local rivals Arsenal to fourth spot by finishing two points above Mikel Arteta’s side.
Under Conte’s guidance they reached the semi-final of the Carabao Cup too. Although, they lost to fellow London outfit Chelsea over two legs.
Spurs have a good chance at making Champions League qualification again this campaign, as they sit in fifth spot. They are just a point behind fourth-placed Newcastle, though the Magpies do have a game in hand.
Plus, Spurs remain in the Champions League, where they will come up against AC Milan in the round of 16, while they will also face Sheffield United in the FA Cup fifth round.
Despite Conte making Spurs competitive again, it has not been an easy ride. The boss has been criticised at times for the poor football Spurs have played under him.
There has also been tension between Conte and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, particularly surrounding the Djed Spence capture. Conte has refused to play the right-back on a regular basis as the signing was not made with him in mind.
Antonio Conte expiring contract gives club hope
Conte does not tend to stick around at a club long. And with his contract expiring at the end of the season there is a chance Spurs could be hunting for a new coach in the summer.
And according to Italian newspaper La Repubblica, Serie A giants Milan could pounce on the situation.
Current boss Stefano Pioli is under pressure at Milan. He helped the team win the Scudetto in 2021-22. But a run of two draws and three defeats in Milan’s last five league matches has seen them drop to sixth. Even worse for Pioli is the fact the Rossoneri have been knocked out of the Coppa Italia and lost the Supercoppa Italiana final since January 11.
The report states Pioli is ‘in trouble’. And the club’s hierarchy are on the lookout for potential replacements.
The man in pole position to take over is Conte. Milan reckon they can convince him to return to Italy as he has never fully committed his long-term future to Spurs.
Conte linking up with Milan would be a controversial appointment. This is because he was at rivals Inter between 2019 and 2021, helping them to win the Scudetto the season before Milan.
Manager’s success makes him obvious appointment
However, Conte’s experience in Serie A means he simply has to be a frontrunner for the Milan job. Before his title triumph with Inter, he also guided Juventus to three Scudettos between 2012 and 2014.
The former midfielder is not the only Premier League coach being looked at by Milan. The report states they are also considering Roberto De Zerbi of Brighton.
De Zerbi has done a brilliant job since replacing Graham Potter at the Amex. He has helped Brighton to reach sixth in the Prem table. This, coupled with the exciting football Brighton are playing, means it is little surprise Milan are plotting a move for him.
Meanwhile, Wednesday’s Transfer Gossip claims Spurs will battle Jose Mourinho’s Roma for a Liverpool player.