Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

Antonio Conte claims ‘top’ star ‘loves Tottenham’ and ‘Tottenham loves him’

TEAMtalk staff
Antonio Conte standing on the touchline for Tottenham

Antonio Conte insists that Hugo Lloris “loves Tottenham and Tottenham loves him” as doubts continue to surround the Frenchman’s long-term stay in north London.

Davinson Sanchez’s last-gasp winner ensured Spurs left with all three points after a 1-0 win at Watford on New Year’s Day. However, they had looked set to be frustrated again as they struggled to make the breakthrough against the Hornets despite dominating possession and having a number of chances at Vicarage Road.

The match was deep into almost 10 minutes of added time, following a late stoppage due to a medical emergency in the crowd, when Sanchez headed Son Heung-min’s free-kick past Daniel Bachmann to earn Conte’s men all three points.

Lloris was an isolated figure for much of the game. However, he had to be alert to make a smart save to deny Joshua King in the second half.

Conte said: “You can see the level of the keeper in these circumstances. When for the whole game he didn’t make a save but he continued to be focused with the team. For me it is very important because when I speak with the team, the link and connection with the keeper and the team is very important.

“It is important especially when you defend high with the defensive line. The keeper has to follow the game and not only to stay on the line, on the goal to make saves.”

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France goalkeeper Lloris’ contract expires at the end of the season. That means he can talk to foreign clubs about a free transfer in the summer.

But Conte added: “Hugo today showed that he is at the top and he is always focused. For us he is very important and I am sure that in the short time they can find a solution in the club because he loves Tottenham and Tottenham loves him,” Conte added.

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Tottenham star chasing Juventus move

Meanwhile, Tottenham star Giovani Lo Celso is reportedly ‘pleased’ after an initial approach arrived from a European giant for his signature.

Lo Celso, 25, has been at the north London club since August 2019. He joined on a season-long loan before Tottenham forked out £27.2m to sign him permanently in January 2020.

The central midfielder has gone on to make 80 appearances in all competitions, registering eight goals and five assists.

Lo Celso been out of action since November due to injuries but is now back in the frame. He came off the bench in Saturday’s narrow 1-0 victory over Watford at Vicarage Road.

Giovani Lo Celso Tottenham

The Argentine will be looking to impress Antonio Conte over the next few weeks. His main rivals for a starting spot are Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Harry Winks and Oliver Skipp.

Lo Celso could leave in swap deal

However, reports suggest Lo Celso could be in line for a January exit. Sport Witness, citing reports in Italy, claim the playmaker might join Juventus as part of a swap deal for Dejan Kulusevski.

Team-mate Tanguy Ndombele is also available for transfer, as Conte ‘can do without’ the pair.

An update from Goal, who cite Italian outlet Calciomercato, states the pursuit has now swapped around. Juventus have apparently launched an initial approach for Lo Celso.

They want to sign him on loan for the second half of the campaign. He could be taken to Turin permanently if he impresses over that period.

Lo Celso is ‘pleased’ with the offer as he is open to playing in Serie A. This means he could secure an exciting move to operate under Max Allegri at the Allianz Stadium.

Juve are not the only team to be chasing the star’s signature. But his other potential suitors remained unnamed.

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