Report reveals Levy blocked Conte move for explosive wing-back as Tottenham ‘split’ came to light

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Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy blocked a move by Antonio Conte to bring Wolves winger Adama Traore to north London, according to reports.

There is widespread speculation that Spurs have already made the decision to sack Conte before the end of the international break with compensation now being discussed.

Conte hit out at his “selfish” players after they threw away a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 against Southampton at the weekend, while the Italian also criticised the Tottenham board for allowing the current culture at the club to exist.

And now The Athletic have put together an article titled: ‘How Conte’s Tottenham turned ‘toxic’: The tension he brought has proven too much’.

On the regression under Conte this season, The Athletic reporter Jack Pitt-Brooke wrote:

‘It did not take long for the mood to deteriorate. Conte’s relentless public criticism of club policy eroded all goodwill. Fabio Paratici became more important than ever as the only senior club figure with whom Conte was still close.

The players became increasingly fed up with Conte’s repetitive training and restrictive tactics. The words “toxic” and even “rotten” kept coming up in conversations with dressing-room sources, who have been granted anonymity to protect relationships. Some even commented privately that the mood was far worse than it was in the final days of Jose Mourinho.’

And the ‘split’ between Levy and Conte was never more apparent than in January 2022 when they disagreed on recruitment with Conte keen to bring in Traore from Wolves.

Pitt-Brooke added:

‘Recruitment was a constant issue, the clearest sign of the conflicting visions of Conte and the club. Levy, it must be remembered, never promised that Tottenham would suddenly be able to throw big money at new players.

‘But Conte rarely missed an opportunity to tell the world he wanted them to bring in experience, while it was the club’s policy to target young players. The first time this split came into the public eye was the January 2022 window. It did not start well: Conte wanted Adama Traore as a wing-back, Levy was unconvinced, Traore went to Barcelona instead.’

Conte could miss out on around another £15m if he leaves before the end of the season, according to the Daily Telegraph, with the Italian’s contract including an option of another year if Tottenham finish in the top four.

READ MORE: Transfer gossip: Spurs eye axed Bayern boss while big names wait on Man Utd takeover


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