Antonio Conte says he enjoys the challenge of trying to implant his philosophy at Tottenham Hotspur, as his in-form side prepare to face Everton this weekend in the Premier League.
A superb start to the campaign has got Spurs nipping at the heels of champions Manchester City and surprise package Arsenal, and in the thick of a title race, even at this early juncture.
“I think to transfer this message with the words is not difficult because everyone can speak about mentality, the winning mentality, everybody,” Conte mused. “The difficulty is to transfer this concept every day through their work, their behaviour. To build a winning mentality is fatiguing. You have to be available to do this path. It’s not for all. Many people can ask you but then when they understand the way which you have to go through and they can say ‘it’s not for me’.
“We are working a lot on this aspect. I’m enjoying a lot to work with these players and try to involve the whole Tottenham environment because winning mentality has to be for the whole club and not only for the players. It has to be the whole club.”
Opposite number Frank Lampard, meanwhile, was full of praise for the Italian in his pre-match comments, with the former Chelsea boss outlining that his side expect a fearsome test when they make the trip down to the capital to face them.
“He’s a great coach,” he stated. “He has had great success in his career. I’ve got nothing but the highest praise for him. He’s got fantastic players and a clear, defined way of play that’s well coached and well delivered. Obviously they’ve got showstoppers at the front end of the pitch, but across the board they are a good unit.”
Everton were thrashed 5-0 by Spurs last season, but Lampard isn’t dwelling on that result.
“It’s a long time ago, and we’ve progressed since then. It has no real relevance to this weekend,” he said.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Tottenham – Richarlison
The Brazilian scored 43 goals for Everton, but is yet to get off the mark for Spurs in the competition. He could be the fifth player to score his first PL goal for them against a side he previously played for, after David Bentley, Louis Saha, William Gallas and Fernando Llorente.
Everton – Alex Iwobi
The Toffees man leads the way for Premier League goal involvements for the club with four, having scored once and assisted three more. He also leads the way for chances created (18) and overall passes (388), marking him out as the roving engine room of their side.
KEY OPTA FACTS
– Tottenham have lost just one of their last 19 Premier League meetings with Everton (W9 D9), going down 1-0 at home in September 2020.
– After winning three consecutive away league games against Spurs between 2006 and 2008, Everton have won just one of their subsequent 13 visits to Spurs (D4 L8).
– Tottenham have won their last seven Premier League home games, their longest run since a streak of 14 between November 2016 and May 2017.
– No team has lost more away Premier League games against London sides than Everton (84, level with Newcastle). The Toffees have lost five of their last seven visits to the capital (D2), since a 1-0 win at West Ham in May 2021.
– Defeat against Manchester United last time out ended a six-game unbeaten run for Everton in the Premier League (W2 D4). However, they’re looking to secure back-to-back away league victories for the first time since May 2021.