Antonio Conte’s appointment does not guarantee success for Tottenham, but managing director Fabio Paratici is hopeful his compatriot is the right man to end the club’s trophy drought.
Spurs announced Conte as Nuno Espirito Santo’s successor on Tuesday after bringing an end to the Portuguese coach’s tenure just four months into a two-year deal.
The 52-year-old is reunited with Paratici following their time together at Juventus, where Conte won three successive Serie A titles.
He also won a Scudetto in his second and final season with Inter in 2020-21 and previously lifted the Premier League and FA Cup in two years with Spurs’ London rivals Chelsea.
With nine trophies across his coaching career, Conte is now tasked with ending Tottenham’s wait for silverware, which spans 5,001 days since their 2008 EFL Cup triumph.
But with Jose Mourinho and Mauricio Pochettino among those to have tried and failed to stop the rot, Paratici accepts a big-name appointment in itself is not the only ingredient required.
“We have to work, to be focused, to be committed and to be involved with this project 100 per cent every day,” he said at a news conference on Wednesday.
“This is what we can do, what we have to do. It is not assurance to win something – nobody can give you this assurance. I think we have to do the best we can.
“No one can guarantee we will win. There are no assurances. We have to do the best to compete to win. When we reach this level, then we want to improve again and win trophies.”
Conte previously rejected the chance to take over at Tottenham prior to Nuno’s short-lived reign, citing the fact he had only just stepped down from his position at Inter.
Paratici knows exactly what to expect from his former colleague but has called on supporters to show some patience while his fellow Italian gets to grips with a new squad.
“Now was the right time because we spoke once with Antonio in the summer, but it was not the right time then,” Paratici said. “He was not ready for a new opportunity then.
“I worked with Antonio before but it was at a different club. I know him very well; he’s a hard worker, he has a lot of passion and a lot of knowledge.
“He is one of the best coaches in the world. His track record speaks for itself. We have to work harder and be committed.
“We’re here to do our best to win trophies. Big or small trophy, it doesn’t matter. We serve to win every game, to build to be the best this season and the next seasons.
“But sometimes you have to be patient. For sure we believe we can achieve our target. It is why we are here. We have everything to achieve big things.”
Conte was reportedly persuaded to take on the Spurs job after being promised large funds to strengthen the squad in the January transfer window.
However, Paratici says he is yet to discuss possible targets with Conte and instead wants the former Italy head coach to get the most out of his current group.
“We trust in our players and are focused on being a better team,” he said. “The team we have is competitive. We do not speak about other players now. It’s not time for that.”
One of those Conte will be tasked with getting more out of is star striker Harry Kane, who has endured a slow start to the 2021-22 campaign.
“It’s not just about Harry,” Paratici added. “We are here to work, to achieve our ambitions as a club, not as individuals.
“We try to do the best for this club every day in order to build something good, not just for this season but for the long-term project. It’s not just about Harry but about everyone.”
Conte must first steady the ship at Tottenham following the dismissal of Nuno, who managed just 10 Premier League games – the fewest of any Tottenham boss.
The Italian’s win rate of 67 per cent is the second-highest of any manager to have taken charge of at least 20 Premier League games, behind only Pep Guardiola (73 per cent).
And having achieved success in a number of other jobs, Spurs skipper Hugo Lloris is excited about what the future holds under Conte.
“He’s going to give a proper structure to the team. As players we need to demand more from each other,” Lloris said.
“I think it’s a great opportunity to work under one of the greatest managers of the last few years. Now is not a time for words, it’s time to work.
“He’s the kind of manager to help all the club improve. His CV talks for itself. This week is really important for the club.”
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