Antonio Conte remains hopeful that Tottenham and Hugo Lloris will be able to reach an agreement over a new contract for the Frenchman.
Lloris, 35, has entered the final six months of his contract and is now able to discuss an end-of-season free transfer with foreign clubs.
One of those he has been linked with is boyhood club Nice, where Lloris came through the academy and then spent three years in the first team before making the move to Lyon in 2008.
Lloris joined Spurs in 2012, and helped the club become a regular in the Champions League under Mauricio Pochettino, who guided them to the final of that competition in 2018-19.
The shot-stopper was made Tottenham captain in 2015, while he has worn the armband for his country since 2012, leading Les Bleus to World Cup glory in 2018.
But while Lloris has previously been maligned for being error prone, he does appear to have improved in that regard in the past few seasons.
Between 2015-16 and the end the 2018-19 Premier League season, Lloris’ 25 errors leading to shots equated to 0.18 per 90 minutes – among goalkeepers to play at least 3,500 minutes in that time, only Asmir Begovic averaged more errors (0.2) each game.
Since then, he’s only committed three and none of those have been this season – indeed, his eight clean sheets in 2021-22 is bettered by just Ederson (11), Aaron Ramsdale and Alisson (both nine), though Lloris’ five since Conte’s first game in charge is not improved on by anyone.
This season, only five goalkeepers (minimum 200 minutes played) boast a better save percentage than Lloris (71.01 per cent), and Conte is convinced an agreement can be found to take him into an 11th year at the club.
Speaking after Spurs’ dramatic late 1-0 win at Watford, Conte told reporters: “You can see the level of the keeper in these circumstances, when, for the whole game, [Lloris] didn’t make a save, but he continued to be focused for the team.
“For me, that’s very important. The ‘keeper has to follow the game and not only stay on the goal line to make saves.
“Hugo showed [on Saturday] that he’s top and he’s always focused.
“For us, he’s very important, and I’m sure that in a short time he can find a [contract] solution with the club, because he loves Tottenham and Tottenham loves him.”
Lloris is already the goalkeeper with the most Premier League appearances for Spurs (316), 76 more than Ian Walker.
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