Tottenham Hotspur

Tottenham Hotspur

Premier League • England

‘They’ve got to go’ – Levy warned Tottenham approach must change when Conte calls

Tottenham manager Antonio Conte 2021

Glenn Hoddle has warned Tottenham supremo Daniel Levy he must alter his customary approach or risk missing out on a golden opportunity under Antonio Conte.

Glenn Hoddle knows the challenges of managing Tottenham better than most, but believes Antonio Conte is the best man to get it right. Conte was announced as Nuno Espirito Santo’s successor before the international break and is tasked with taking Spurs back to the top table of English football.

Hoddle, who has documented his life and career in his new autobiography ‘Playmaker’, had dreams of doing similar when he took the job in 2001, but it did not quite work out like that.

The 64-year-old’s love for the club shines through in the book, but he feels he was not given the backing required to rebuild an ageing squad, expressing frustration with the way chairman Daniel Levy conducted transfer deals.

Conte is a man known for demanding funds – a factor understood to have been key in why initial talks broke down during the summer.

Hoddle, who watched Spurs as a boy and went on to play for them for 12 years, says Conte is the best man for the job and must be given the power – and money – to overhaul the squad.

However, he also insisted Spurs chief Levy must be willing to change when the inevitable time comes when Conte demands both a clear-out and influx of new faces.

“I think the appointment was as best as Daniel could have made at that time,” he told the PA news agency.

“Out of anyone out there, I don’t think you could have picked anyone better if Daniel’s attitude has slightly changed now. It must have changed from when he went for him in the summer.

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“I think there’s a lot of positives here. He is somebody that knows what he wants from a team. He will demand that and he will demand money if it’s not working his way.

“I think they’re in a really strong position if Daniel knows the circumstances and Conte says, ‘Look, if it doesn’t work out with certain players, they’ve got to go. I’ll rebuild. And I’ve done it with other clubs and have been successful’.

“And I think Daniel’s got to buy into that now. If that’s the case, then yes, we’ve got the right jockey on the horse.”

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Hoddle warns of Pochettino repeat

The club missed out on their biggest chance to become a real dominant force recently as, after Mauricio Pochettino had got them challenging for the big honours, they went through two transfer windows without signing anyone and things went quickly south.

Hoddle has commended Levy for his transformation of the club off the field, but says it is needs matching on the pitch.

“He had his way of dealing with negotiations, which I found slightly different to what I would be used to,” the former Spurs boss added.

“But obviously, as a businessman that was his style. He’s got his own style. And I felt that was sometimes difficult at a football club, it might have been fine in other businesses.

“But what he’s done off the pitch with what he’s done at Tottenham, with a stadium and everything on the business front is second to a miracle. It’s fantastic work he’s done.

“But it has to go hand in hand with building a squad. And I think, just looking at it as a fan, I think it needed to be built on around the (2019) Champions League final time. That was an opportunity to build a squad and I think that time was missed.”

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