Exclusive: Antonio Conte to stay at Tottenham

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Antonio Conte - GETTY IMAGES
Antonio Conte - GETTY IMAGES

Antonio Conte has given Tottenham Hotspur and chairman Daniel Levy a huge boost by deciding to stay on as the club’s head coach.

Conte held talks with Tottenham’s managing director of football, Fabio Paratici, in Turin on Friday and is understood to now be preparing himself to remain in charge for next season.

The news will end speculation over the future of Conte, who spent four days deliberating over whether or not to stay at Spurs after leading the club back into the Champions League with last Sunday’s victory over Norwich City.

It will also be welcomed by the Tottenham dressing-room, including Harry Kane who is thought to be open to the idea of holding discussions over a new contract with Conte in charge of the team.

Paratici has promised Conte that Spurs will try to make at least six new signings this summer, with the majority of the £150 million invested into the club this week likely to go to the Italian.

Conte still believes there is a big job to do at Tottenham to make sure the club can compete in the Premier League and Champions League, having secured what had seemed like an unlikely fourth-place finish and qualification.

Harry Kane - AP Photo/Ian Walton
Harry Kane - AP Photo/Ian Walton

But Tottenham have demonstrated enough ambition to convince Conte that it is worth him staying to embark on what will be his first full season at the club.

As long as Spurs and Paratici are as good as their word, then Conte will now spend the summer trying to build a squad that he believes will be able to cope with the dual demands of the Premier League and Champions League.

Tottenham are already on the verge of signing Fraser Forster as the club’s new back-goalkeeper and Paratici has told Conte the club will target two new wing-backs, a centre-back, a midfielder and a forward who can also operate from wide areas.

Two of Conte’s top targets are Ivan Perisic and Alessandro Bastoni, who both spent last season at the 52-year-old’s previous club, Internazionale. Perisic is a free agent and could operate as a right wing-back under Conte, while central defender Bastoni would cost in the region of £50m.

Eintracht Frankfurt left wing-back Filip Kostic is understood to be on Tottenham’s radar, along with Manchester City forward Gabriel Jesus, who is considering his future with the Premier League champions. Arsenal have already registered an interest in Jesus, but qualification for the Champions League could give Spurs the edge.

Christian Eriksen is currently considering whether or not to remain at Brentford next season or consider other options, one of which is thought to be a potential return to Tottenham.

Conte signed a 1½-year contract, which includes an option to extend it by a further 12 months, when he succeeded Nuno Espirito Santo last November. The former Chelsea coach has done an incredible job since returning to the Premier League.

Kane is one of a number of Spurs players who have lavished praise on Conte and with two years remaining on the England captain’s contract, the club are likely to attempt to open negotiations this summer over a new deal.

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