Harry Kane: Antonio Conte told us he’s come to Tottenham to win - we have no excuses

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Harry Kane: Antonio Conte told us he’s come to Tottenham to win - we have no excuses
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Harry Kane has hailed Tottenham’s show of “great ambition” in appointing Antonio Conte and warned his teammates they have “no excuses” for failure under the new head coach.

In his first newspaper interview while on club duty in over a year, Kane urged the Spurs squad to spend “every minute of our lives” trying to improve under Conte and insisted he is not worried about his own form.

Kane had become disillusioned with the direction of the club and tried to engineer a move to champions Manchester City during the summer.

But he says he is “really excited” to work under Conte and believes the Italian can help the club “turn around” their decline – provided the players are willing to give him everything.

“It shows great ambition to be honest,” Kane told Standard Sport. “His resume speaks for itself. Everyone knows how highly thought of he is and what he has done as a manager in the game. You have to respect that.

“He will work as hard as he can to improve us as players but it is about us taking it in, learning, doing more on the pitch, doing more in training, doing more away from training.

“And making sure we give ourselves every opportunity to win. We have a manager and a club that believe in us and this appointment definitely shows that.

“He is a fantastic manager. We haven’t reached the standards we have wanted to over the last couple of years, but we hope that this manager can help us turn it around.

“But it’s about us and how we take it in – because he has done it, he has nothing to prove. He has done it on the biggest stage with the biggest teams, so he will give us everything he has to improve us and now it’s down to us as players to have no excuses.

“We have to make sure every minute of our lives we are trying to improve and win for this team and that is the only way we are going to move forward.”

Named as Nuno Espirito Santo’s successor on Tuesday, Conte took charge of the team for the first time in last night’s wild 3-2 win over nine-man Vitesse Arnhem.

Spurs raced into a 3-0 lead inside 28 minutes through Heung-min Son, Lucas Moura and an own goal but Vitesse scored twice before the interval to emphasise the scale of the job facing Conte.

Cristian Romero was sent off on the hour and Vitesse finished with nine men after being shown two late red cards.

Kane finished with two assists, although it was another slightly clunky performance from the England captain, suggesting the change in the dugout will not immediately return him to his best.

Asked about his own form, Kane said: “I always believe in myself and always believe in my ability. I am 28, I have still got a lot to learn, a lot to improve on.

“It’s not been the start I wanted, the team wanted or the club wanted. We all know that.

“We all have to take responsibility for that as players. It is not something I am worried about. I will keep working and I am really excited about working with this manager.

“I’m sure he can improve me and that is exciting. When you have done what I have done in the game so far and still feel like there is more to come, that’s definitely exciting. I’m looking forward to it.”

Conte addressed the squad for the first time on Tuesday afternoon and Kane revealed he had told the players he had come to Spurs to win, adding that he already wants “to put his body on the line” for the new boss.

“The biggest thing for him was that he said he came here because he trusts the players, he came here because he wants to win,” Kane said.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

“He has been fantastic. He was as good as a manager can be coming into a difficult situation and everyone is really looking forward to getting to work with him on a daily basis, getting to learn and trying to improve. That is the main thing he will do: try and improve each and every player.

“He definitely brings a lot of passion, a lot of determination, whether that’s on the training pitch, in meetings or in the dressing room.

“He has won trophies at the highest level with the biggest clubs so everyone is excited to learn, excited to work under him and that passion he shows every day, every meeting, every training session is what you thrive on. You go into games wanting to put your body on the line for him and you can feel that already.”

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