Gary Neville insists it is not too late for Tottenham to reach an agreement to retain the services of Antonio Conte after dismissing suggestions over the Italian’s reign that he feels are a “myth”.
The future of the Tottenham chief appears somewhat flimsy given his deal expires at the end of the season. Having signed up for 18 months back in November 2021, his deal now has less than six months to run. And while Tottenham are fifth in the Premier League and through to the last 16 of the Champions League, the club appear – on the surface at least – to be exactly where they would hope to be.
However, cracks have appeared to show behind the scenes in recent weeks. Hurtful defeats to Arsenal and Manchester City have led to growing calls that Conte will walk away when his deal expires.
And those voices grew louder on Sunday when a well-placed Italian journalist made a massive claim on Conte’s plans.
To add to the apparent unease behind the scenes, their supporters trust has written to chairman Daniel Levy to reveal their anger at the direction the club is heading.
And with Conte regularly making public claims of his frustration at Tottenham, it is easy to understand why talk of him leaving are growing so loud.
Weighing up the future for Conte, our transfer insider Graeme Bailey insists a couple of signings this month can quickly remedy the situation.
Now Neville, speaking on Sky Sports, after Tottenham’s 1-0 win at Fulham on Monday, has stated his reasons why Conte can stay at Tottenham.
Conte and Tottenham suit each other, claims Gary Neville
And in his eyes, Spurs are in a good place with Conte at the helm and he cannot understand the frustration behind the scenes.
“I think Tottenham are very lucky to have Antonio Conte,” he said. “He got them into the Champions League last season, he’s done the job they wanted, they’re only a few points off the top four.
“They’re playing AC Milan in a few weeks time, they’re in the FA Cup, I’d say they’re on track. They need to see what an opportunity they have here to have a great season.”
Neville is also adamant that Tottenham are the best place for Conte to be at right now. And dismissing suggestions that Conte has not been financially well backed, he added: “What job is he going to get currently that is better than Tottenham Hotspur?
“They’re in the Champions League, they’ve got the most unbelievable stadium in European football, and he’s been given £200m in two windows, so the idea that Spurs haven’t supported him is wrong, it’s a myth.”
Conte urged to agree new deal at Tottenham
Revealing why he thinks it is not too late for Conte to stay, he has urged the Italian and chairman Levy to sit down, drop their confrontations and agree on a new deal.
“I think both of them should go and shake hands tomorrow and sign a two-three year deal,” he said. He added: “Because it feels liken they’re wondering down the road aimlessly as if they’re not mates. Why would they not be mates?”
Neville does admit that the pressure has cranked up a little on Tottenham and Conte in the wake of Arsenal’s magnificent form.
Spurs finished ahead of them last season, pipping them to a top-four finish.
This time around though, Spurs have pretty much stayed where they were while Arsenal and Mikel Arteta have soared past them. Now top of the Premier League, the Gunners have a great chance to win the title.
“Conte’s not done the job that Mikel Arleta’s done this season with his squad, but Arteta’s done an unbelievable job, he’d shocked us all.
“It’s going really well at Tottenham, I’d say they’re on track for where I thought they’d be,” Neville concluded.