Arsey Antonio opens with sarcastic Jurgen Klopp question before Son World Cup update

Antonio Conte during defeat to Liverpool Credit: Alamy
Antonio Conte during defeat to Liverpool Credit: Alamy

Tottenham coach Antonio Conte started his press conference by reopening old wounds after Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp had criticised his style of football following their draw back at Anfield last season.

This time Spurs lost 2-1 to the Reds so there was obviously no such criticism.

“Before I answer your question, Jurgen was happy for the way we played tonight? Yeah? No, because it was important to know his opinion,” the Spurs boss quipped.

Tottenham were punished for a slow start when Mo Salah fired Liverpool into a deserved early lead but the hosts responded well with Alisson Becker diverting Kane’s cross onto the post before the Reds number 11 grabbed his second when Eric Dier miscued his header.

Kane gave Spurs hope with a fine first-time finish, after Dejan Kulusevski made an instant impact off the bench, but after Clement Lenglet and Rodrigo Bentancur failed to make the most of headed chances, the hosts tasted a third defeat from their last four league games.

Ivan Perisic had hit the crossbar early into the second half after the home fans had booed at the break.

“We have to show in every moment great respect for our fans because they are our fans, they pay the ticket. At the same time, if you ask me if I was a bit disappointed? Yes,” Conte insisted.

“I continue to repeat always the same situation from the start of the season and I say we have just started a process. I think after one year we made a lot of improvement.

“If someone thinks that we are already ready to win, I have to be honest with you and tell you it will be really, really, difficult. Because when you start and Liverpool is a good example, when you start a process, you need time and patience.”

Conte has eased fears surrounding Son Heung-min by expressing his confidence that the South Korea star will be fit to feature at the World Cup.

The Spurs attacker sustained a fracture around his left eye on Tuesday during their 2-1 win at Marseille following a collision with Chancel Mbemba.

It has left Son in a race against time to be available for the tournament in Qatar, which gets under way on November 20.

The 30-year-old had surgery on Friday and therefore missed Tottenham’s 2-1 defeat to Liverpool.

He is also expected to sit out next week’s matches against Nottingham Forest and Leeds but his club manager provided a positive update with South Korea set to begin their World Cup with a Group H fixture with Uruguay on November 24.

“Now, he is at home,” Conte said of Son.

“I sent him a message yesterday after the surgery and Sonny was really, really disappointed for this situation but I hope for him he will recover very well and play in the World Cup.

“I was a player and I know the importance of playing in the World Cup.

“Tonight he was the first person to play this game, for sure he missed us. I am confident, confident that he can come back quickly and play the World Cup for South Korea.”

Son jointly won the Premier League golden boot last season but has struggled for form this campaign and scored only five goals in 19 games in all competitions for Tottenham.

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