Tottenham players reportedly expressed doubts about Antonio Conte’s management style when it became clear that the club was in advanced talks with the Italian over replacing Jose Mourinho. Conte was favourite to take the Spurs job until Friday when discussions broke down.
Chairman Daniel Levy has been searching for a permanent head coach since sacking Mourinho in early April.
The Portuguese was dismissed having failed to lift the club back among the Premier League’s elite clubs after they stalled in the latter months of Mauricio Pochettino’s tenure.
Mourinho lasted just 17 months after replacing Pochettino in November 2019.
He guided them to a sixth-placed finish in his first half-season but was seventh in the following campaign by the time he was sacked.
At Chelsea, Conte received criticism for not turning to a talented pool of academy stars.
Tottenham have the likes of forward Dane Scarlett, midfielder Harvey White and full-back Dennis Curkin coming through and hope to integrate them into the first team.
Addressing supporters ahead of the final home game of the season, a 2-1 defeat against Aston Villa, Levy said that the next manager will play attacking football and use the club’s academy.
“As a club we have been so focused on delivering the stadium and dealing with the impact of the pandemic, that I feel we lost sight of some key priorities and what’s truly in our DNA,” Levy told fans.
“We are acutely aware of the need to select someone whose values reflect those of our great club and return to playing football with the style for which we are known – free-flowing, attacking and entertaining – whilst continuing to embrace our desire to see young players flourish from our Academy alongside experienced talent.”