Antonio Conte promises Dele Alli the chance to start matches with Tottenham – if he proves he deserves it | Football news


Antonio Conte hailed Dele Alli as a player with “great potential” and promised him the chance to restart matches for Tottenham if he proves he deserves it.

Alli has 12 appearances for Spurs this season but failed to impress Nuno Espirito Santo, with his increasingly limited playing time at the end of the Portuguese short reign.

Alli also struggled under Jose Mourinho, Nuno’s predecessor, but Conte has positive memories of the 25-year-old from his previous stint in England.

Alli scored two goals for the Spurs when they ended Chelsea’s 13-game streak in the 2016/17 season, the year the Blues won the Premier League under Conte.

And the new Spurs coach said: “I remember very well when we played against Tottenham in the past, especially a game where we lost after 13 wins in a row and Dele scored twice.

Antonio Conte joined Tottenham this month as a replacement for Nuno Espirito Santo

But this is the past. Now there is a present and certainly Dele is a player who has great potential. Physically he is strong and very good.

“For sure I give him the opportunity to show he has talent. At the same time when I choose the starting eleven I do it because I think they can lead the team to victory, the same when I make changes during the game.

“I am open, I am open to every single Tottenham player. The most important thing is that they show me that they deserve the chance to play.

“The door is open for every single player. My first thought is to try to give them the best situation to show their talent, but then they have to show me that I have to be sure to give them a chance and pay off. For all players, every single player.

“For now we are starting from scratch, there is a new manager. I tell every single player, not specifically Dele, ‘show me that you deserve to play from the start and I will give you the chance to start'”.

Conte’s Spurs reign began with a chaotic 3-2 victory against the Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem in the Europa Conference League on Thursday, and on Sunday he will play his first Premier League match at Everton.

Conte’s last Premier League match at the helm of Chelsea was a 3-0 defeat to Rafael Benitez’s Newcastle, and the Italian expects a tough match when he renews his connections with the Spaniard at Goodison Park.

“I remember losing my last Premier League game against Benitez,” he said. “For sure, our expectation is to have a difficult game because Everton is a really good team. Goodison Park is not an easy place to play.

Everton manager Rafael Benitez during the Premier League match at Liverpool's Goodison Park.  Image date: Saturday October 23, 2021.
Rafael Benitez’s Everton have lost their last three games

“At the same time we want to demonstrate, try to improve the result, especially for our place in the standings. It will not be easy.

“We have to work a lot to try to improve this team. There are many, many aspects. Not only tactical but also physical. We need some time to do it.”

Everton vs Tottenham preview: Delph could start for the Toffees

Team news

Everton midfielder Fabian Delph could make his first game of the season against Tottenham after playing the second half of Monday’s defeat to Wolves on his return from injury.

Yerry Mina (thigh) remains out but fellow defender Lucas Digne, who lost the Wolves game, has trained this week and should be available.

Absent striker Dominic Calvert-Lewin (thigh) and midfielders Andre Gomes (calf) and Abdoulaye Doucoure (foot).

New one Tottenham Head coach Antonio Conte will evaluate his players after Thursday night’s efforts against Vitesse Arnhem.

Conte chose a full squad for his first match as a coach in the Europa Conference League and it was a difficult match, which they won 3-2.

Defender Ryan Sessegnon and midfielder Bryan Gil (both hamstrings) are not expected to be in shape.

How to follow

Follow Everton vs Tottenham on our live match blog. The highlights will also be posted on the Sky Sports digital platforms and on the Sky Sports Football YouTube channel shortly after full-time.


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