Conte exit 'the right decision for everyone' at Tottenham, says Paratici

By Sports Desk March 28, 2023

Tottenham's managing director Fabio Paratici believes Antonio Conte's exit was "the right decision for everyone" and is confident interim boss Cristian Stellini can oversee a successful end to the season.

Conte and Spurs parted company on Sunday, eight days after the Italian launched a remarkable rant in the wake of his side squandering a two-goal lead in a 3-3 draw at Southampton. 

As well as labelling Tottenham's players "selfish", Conte appeared to criticise the club's hierarchy by adding: "Tottenham's story is this – 20 years and they never won something. Why?"

While Paratici acknowledges Conte – who recently missed several games after undergoing gallbladder surgery – has endured a difficult few months in his personal life, he believes his exit will benefit all parties.

"We know how difficult this season was for him personally," Paratici told the club's website."[Spurs' fitness coach] Gian Piero [Ventrone] died and [Gianluca] Vialli, and then his surgery. 

"The club supported him a lot with it, and everyone is close to each other but then we arrived in this mutual agreement, and I think the decision that we made was the right decision for everyone."

Stellini – who served as Conte's assistant at Juventus and Inter – has taken the reins as Spurs battle for a top-four Premier League finish, and Paratici thinks the 48-year-old is ready to make the step up.

"Cristian managed the team even when Antonio was sick this season and was good," Paratici added. "He has a lot of experience as a second coach and he was even first coach in the past. 

"Then we have Ryan Mason who can help him a lot. He has been a part of this club for a long time, and he knows everything about this club and this group of players. We are really, really confident that these two people can do a very good job."

Several high-profile coaches – including Julian Nagelsmann and Mauricio Pochettino – have been touted as possible long-term replacements for Conte, but Paratici will not discuss the search for a permanent boss while the season is ongoing.

"We have to have everyone focused on the last part of the season," he said. "We do not speak about other coaches or follow the speculation in the media because it is just speculation. 

"We are focused, we are now concentrating on helping Cristian and helping the staff, Ryan, and the players. It is an important moment."

Tottenham sit fourth in the Premier League ahead of the run-in, though they are just two points clear of Newcastle United in fifth, having played two games more than the Magpies.

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