Antonio Conte got a crash course in what he can expect as Tottenham Hotspur’s new manager after the Italian’s first game in charge ended in a 3-2 home victory over Vitesse Arnhem in the Europa Conference League on Thursday.
Conte, who replaced Nuno Espírito Santo this week, watched his side tear into a 3-0 lead after 28 minutes with Son Heung-min and Lucas Moura on target – plus an own goal from Danish defender Jacob Rasmussen as he struggled under pressure from Harry Kane.
He then watched Vitesse score twice in seven minutes before halftime in a frantic tie, complete with the drama of three red cards and an outbreak of crowd trouble amongst the visiting supporters.
“I appreciated my players suffered because it’s important to learn to suffer if you want to win,” he said.
“We need time. We need time to work. We need time to work,” Conte said. “This is the only aspect that, not I’m afraid, but I’d like to have time to work.
“This time and I, we need to work together to bring them my idea of football and to work tactical aspects, physical aspects, to know them, much better than now.
“This is the only aspect that I am a bit scared, a bit afraid. But I know that there is this type of situation, and for this reason, we need a bit of patience,” he said.
Conte was named as Tottenham Hotspur’s new coach on Tuesday on a contract until the summer of 2023 with the option to extend, making him the London club’s fourth permanent manager in the last three years following the dismissal of Mauricio Pochettino in November 2019.
The Italian’s appointment came just a day after Spurs dispensed with the services of Nuno.