Rob Guest had his say on Antonio Conte’s starting line-up in Tottenham Hotspur’s pre-season clash against Rangers.
The Italian made just one change from the side that beat Norwich City on the final day of last season, despite welcoming six new faces this summer. And Rob Guest believes that this could have been sending a message, saying in his piece for Football London: “Antonio Conte perhaps sprung a bit of a surprise with his Tottenham team against Rangers after naming all but one of the side that finished last campaign away to Norwich.
“He may simply have been sending a message out to everyone else that this is his Spurs XI and they need to prove to him exactly why they should be in his strongest lineup.”
Guest may be right, too. Conte will not want to give anyone a free pass into the side based on transfer fees, experience, or reputation. Every starter in his team must seemingly earn their place, and battle to keep it, for that matter, given Spurs’ newfound squad depth.
TIF Thoughts on Tottenham Hotspur…
Spurs have had an extremely busy summer. They’ve welcomed Richarlison, Ivan Perisic, Djed Spence, Fraser Forster, and Clement Lenglet, spending a total of £91.71 million. And, following those arrivals, they are now in a position to challenge on all fronts, and maybe cause a few upsets, in the process.
With a matter of weeks before the Premier League season kicks off, it will certainly be interesting to see who’s included in Conte’s starting line-up on the opening day at home against Southampton. Whether we see competitive debuts for anyone remains to be seen, but those in attendance will be hoping to see their new faces start life at Spurs with a bang.
If they get out of the blocks quickly, then Conte’s side may well have a season to remember in the coming campaign.