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Conte claims Spurs can’t stand the schedule after Newcastle defeat

Tottenham boss Antonio Conte claimed he does not have the strength in depth to compete for the Premier League title after Newcastle’s 2-1 win ended Spurs’ perfect home record this season on Sunday.

A second damaging defeat in five days for Conte’s men leaves them five points adrift of leaders Arsenal, having played a game more than the Gunners.

Newcastle moved into the top four and only two points behind third-placed Tottenham thanks to first-half goals from Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron.

Harry Kane pulled a goal back for the home side after the break, but it was not enough to prevent a first defeat in 11 games at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Conte rubbished suggestions his side could challenge for a first league title since 1961 after being thoroughly outplayed in a 2-0 defeat to Manchester United on Wednesday.

Spurs are seven games into a run of 13 matches in 43 days.

And without the injured Cristian Romero, Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, Richarlison and Dejan Kulusevki, the Italian said the fallibilities of his squad were exposed.

“The squad doesn’t allow to lose four players in this moment,” said Conte.

“The important teams that are going to fight to win, the title contenders, you see them when you play every three days because you need a deep squad and strong squad with quality. We have only just started our process.

“If we play one game every six or seven days, I think we can fight for something important.

“To play every three days, I think we have to be patient and not be disappointed too much.”

Newcastle laid down a marker in the battle for a place in next season’s Champions League as Eddie Howe’s men edged ahead of Chelsea and Manchester United.

Backed by the Saudi sovereign wealth fund, Howe will be given further resources to strengthen in the January window, posing a major threat to the traditional powers for a place in the top four.

But the Newcastle boss claimed putting his side’s rise down the club’s new-found wealth is unfair on the efforts of his players, many of whom were signed before the Saudi takeover.

“The problem is that (the money) takes away the credit from the players,” said Howe.

“We’re enjoying the moment but we won’t be getting ahead of ourselves.”

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