Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Carragher expects Tottenham fireworks with Kane to spark Conte, Levy duel

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane during the Premier League match against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park

Jamie Carragher claimed the first test in the new Tottenham hierarchy will be what to do with Harry Kane, and claimed Daniel Levy must listen to those he has employed and step away from the final decision.

Tottenham appointed Conte as their new manager less than 24 hours after relieving Nuno Espirito Santo of his duties. Spurs were heavily linked with the Italian over the summer, and finally got their man at the second time of asking.

Conte will bring with him a winning mentality and a no-nonsense approach to those within his squad unprepared to put in the hard yards.

That may be exactly what Tottenham need after two failed appointments in the post-Mauricio Pochettino era.

Now, writing in his column for the Telegraph, Carragher has thrown his weight behind the appointment. However, he believes a flashpoint could arise between chairman Daniel Levy and Conte over the future of Kane.

The striker was linked with Manchester City throughout the summer and could be the subject of further bids in January. As such, Carragher believes Levy must step away from the deicsion-making process regarding Kane and trust Conte and Fabio Paratici.

“Since 2011, only Pep Guardiola has won more major titles than Conte,” wrote Carragher. “You cannot recruit such a manager without sharing the same vision, and providing the right environment for him to realise it.

“By hiring Conte, something has to give at Spurs. Either Conte will compromise his expectations of challenging for the biggest prizes – something I cannot imagine – or the Spurs hierarchy will radically shift their sense of ambition and give him the tools which many of his predecessors lacked.

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“No wonder many are expecting regular firework displays on and off the pitch in North London.

“Captivatingly for the rest of us, the first test of the manager/boardroom dynamic is pending. Many will be asking what Spurs will do about Harry Kane this January. The most pertinent question is whose decision will it be?

“Last summer, the battle of wills was between Kane and chairman Daniel Levy. Should a fresh, massive bid materialise from Manchester City in January, Levy must defer to his manager and Sporting Director Fabio Paratici.

Daniel Levy, Tottenham

“Conte has two months to establish if Kane is on board with his plans. Whatever he and Paratici decide  – either cashing in to reinvest money in the squad, or the manager backing himself to get Kane back to his best – Levy must listen.

“If those entrusted to run the football operations are not granted such power – as you can be sure is the case at Manchester City and Liverpool – the 18-month deal the Italian has signed will be exactly what it seems; representative of no more than a short-term relationship.”


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Carragher debunks Conte myth

Carragher then debunked the myth Conte is a chequebook manager. In doing so, he also suggested his ability to bring the best out of players like Romelu Lukaku when at Inter Milan could see him guide the club back to the levels they reached under Pochettino.

“Before he can be a winner at Tottenham, Conte needs to be a club builder,” continued Carragher. “Reassuringly for Spurs, he has already proven himself as such in Italy.

“Rather than demand lavish spending, the start of Conte reigns have often been typified by more prudent means of improving his side.

“He never paid more than £16 million on a player while Juventus coach, but still won three successive Serie A titles, ending a relatively barren spell for the Turin club. At Inter, he got more from Romelu Lukaku than Manchester United, credited by the Belgian striker for making him a more complete centre-forward.

“Such eyes for bargains, and knack of reviving the careers of those who have lost their way, is exactly what Spurs need, but that means he will need much longer than 18 months to get the club back to the level they were under Pochettino. It is delusional to think otherwise.”

READ MORE: Paper Talk: Conte wants impressive Champions League midfielder at Tottenham