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Spurs’ football must match off-field vision, says Conte

Antonio Conte said he wants Tottenham’s team to match the surroundings of the club’s gleaming £1.2 billion ($1.6 billion) stadium as he welcomed the “big challenge” that awaits him on his return to the Premier League.

The Italian, who has won league titles with Juventus, Chelsea and Inter Milan, was appointed Spurs’ fourth manager in two years on Tuesday.

Tottenham, ninth in the Premier League ahead of Sunday’s trip to Everton, have gone backwards since moving into their state-of-the-art home two-and-a-half years ago.

“This is a big challenge I know very well that this club is not winning for many years,” said Conte.

“But I think I’m here to build the win. The win doesn’t happen after one, two or three days or one month. You must have vision.

“This club has a great vision outside of the pitch. Now we have to start having a vision on the pitch, on the football pitch. This is important if we want to win.”

Tottenham have not won a trophy since 2008 but Conte refused to pinpoint silverware as his first target at the club.

After reaching the final of the Champions League in 2019, Spurs have failed to qualify for European football’s premier club competition in the past two seasons.

“Now to tell that we have a specific target is not simple,” added Conte

“At the moment we’ve only to be strong, to start to work together and think that we need to improve. And there’s a lot of space for improvement in this team.

“But now, and more than in the past, after three or four days, we need to work more.”

That hard work has already begun. The day after a 3-2 win over Vitesse Arnhem in the Europa Conference League, Conte’s press conference on Friday was delayed by 90 minutes due to training with his new squad overrunning.

One of the 52-year-old’s first tasks is to get Harry Kane firing.

The England captain has netted just once in the Premier League this season since his bid to force a move to Manchester City during the transfer window failed.

But Kane hailed the club’s ambition in recruiting one of the best coaches in the world.

“It shows great ambition, to be honest,” said Kane. “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 as players.”

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