Spurs boss Conte slams 'crazy' post-World Cup schedule, Latest Football News - The New Paper

Spurs boss Conte slams 'crazy' post-World Cup schedule

LONDON – Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte has criticised the post-World Cup fixture list in England, with League Cup ties set to be held a few days after the final in Qatar.

The World Cup, which begins on Nov 20, will conclude on Dec 18, while the fourth round of the League Cup is scheduled to take place that week with the Premier League resuming on Dec 26.

Speaking ahead of Sunday’s home league clash against Liverpool, Conte said he was concerned about player welfare.

“They (the football authorities) are not really worried about the welfare of the players if the schedule is this,” he said on Friday.

“We knew about this situation, we knew it was crazy to put a World Cup during the league and the Champions League. This type of schedule is crazy.

“Honestly, it’s really strange in England that we start to play three days after the final of the World Cup. We’re the only country to do it. Italy, France, Spain, Portugal and others are taking time to give rest and breathe a bit.

“I find it crazy that Dec 21, after three days from the final, we’re going to play a game in the Carabao Cup. After three more days you have to play in the Premier League.”

Amid the tight fixture schedule and mounting injury list, the Italian will be without Son Heung-min, Richarlison and Cristian Romero for the clash against Liverpool.

Conte also has fitness doubts over Rodrigo Bentancur and Lucas Moura, with Dejan Kulusevski potentially returning this weekend after last playing for Spurs in mid-September.

Earlier, the Spurs boss said he had nothing but respect for what Jurgen Klopp has achieved with Liverpool, saying the patience the Reds showed with the German is proof that managers need time to create title-winning teams.

Liverpool appointed Klopp in 2015 when they were struggling to qualify for the Champions League and he turned things around, leading them to the three finals of Europe’s premier club competition, winning the trophy in 2019 by beating Spurs 2-0 in Madrid.

Klopp also delivered a long-awaited Premier League title to Liverpool in 2020 and achieved the domestic cup double last season.

“I have great respect for Jurgen because his story speaks for him. He has changed the face of Liverpool,” Conte said.

“I remember very well Liverpool didn’t win for a long period. He needed four years to help Liverpool win again and for sure it shows it is important for the coach to have time. Liverpool can be a good example for us.” - REUTERS, AFP

tottenham hotspurAntonio ConteWorld CupQatareplLEAGUE CUP