Antonio Conte may claim to have been hamstrung by Tottenham’s reluctance to bankroll his every whim, but how have his 12 signings fared for the club?
Conte has spent over £180million since arriving at Spurs in November 2021, helping the club finish fourth in 2022 and maintain a push for successive Champions League qualifications this year.
But the former Premier League winner has repeatedly argued that Tottenham need to invest more if they’re ever to harbour serious ambitions of winning the Premier League.
With Conte now sacked, we’ve looked back at the 12 players he’s signed and ranked them from worst to best.
Richarlison and Conte have been engaged in an undignified, but hilarious, public slanging match during the final weeks of the manager’s reign.
And you’ve got to admire Richarlison’s gall; if we’d scored twice in 27 Spurs appearances, including none in the Premier League, we’d have kept silent out of embarrassment and shame.
Still, every chance he comes good under a different manager.
11. Arnaut Danjuma
Wanted: information on a 26-year-old male believed to be missing from the north London area. Last seen looking lost and confused while wearing a Spurs kit at Bramall Lane, Sheffield in early March.
Police are also thought to be investigating the waste of Tottenham Hotspur club funds and the time of everybody involved in this pointless transfer.
10. Yves Bissouma
Fair play Conte; he’s somehow managed to turn Bissouma from one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League to a guy that wouldn’t look out of place at Enfield FC.
The £25million signing has made just eight Premier League starts since moving from Brighton and is somebody who’d definitely relish the chance of a fresh start under a new manager.
9. Destiny Udogie
Signed last summer, Udogie is yet to play for Spurs after being immediately loaned back to Udinese.
But the young full-back has impressed in Italy, and is not tainted by association with Tottenham’s disappointing season. That’s enough to avoid the bottom places here.
8. Djed Spence
Maybe Spence removed Conte’s syrup on his first day of training. Perhaps he left his car in the manager’s parking space and went on holiday. It’s possible Spence insulted Conte’s mother by expelling carbon dioxide from his mouth.
Whatever the reason, the Spurs boss clearly didn’t rate Spence and restricted him to five minutes of Premier League action across four appearances.
He’s spending the second half of the season at Rennes and the next Tottenham manager will surely integrate the promising full-back into his squad.
Conte seeing Djed Spence warming up pic.twitter.com/NqF6Q42AzA
— Jesse PAINman (@rushi_thfc) October 4, 2022
7. Clement Lenglet
A nice stop-gap signing, without promising to be anything more, and far from the worst offender here.
6. Ivan Perisic
As a player with vast experience and evergreen quality, Perisic started the campaign in brilliant form and became a must-have asset on Fantasy Football.
But his form since the World Cup suggests that Perisic decided to take the rest of the season off and sent his doppelganger to replace him at Spurs.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if Perisic left Tottenham this summer, but he’s still been better than most on this list.
5. Fraser Forster
Forster has been reliable between the sticks since injury stuck down Hugo Lloris, with the veteran goalkeeper earning praise for earning Spurs results they perhaps didn’t deserve.
And his form has earnt Forster a recall to the England squad. Not bad for a classic ‘homegrown quota’ filler.
4. Pedro Porro
Despite a name that sounds like a Twitter putdown (Pedro Porro signs for Pottenam Potspur), the full-back has impressed with his performances since joining the club in January.
He scored his first goal for Spurs at Southampton before the meltdown that sparked Conte’s infamous outburst and will move to London permanently in the summer.
3. Rodrigo Bentancur
A classy midfield operator, Bentancur joined Spurs last January and helped the club overhaul Arsenal into the final Champions League spot.
Comfortable on the ball, and equally comfortable tackling opponents, the Uruguay international has been sorely missed during his injury absences this season.
The very definition of an underrated player.
2. Cristian Romero
Yes, Romero is a few empanadas short of a picnic, but he remains a quality defender that any future Spurs boss will surely build their backline around.
1. Dejan Kulusevski
An unquestionable winner here; Kulusevski has been a triumph since arriving at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in January 2022.
Blessed with skill, intelligence and the engine of a cross-country locomotive, the Sweden international dovetailed brilliantly with Harry Kane and Son Heung-min to fire Spurs’ charge for the top four last year.
His form, just like many of his team-mates, has dropped off this season but there can be no denying his impact in north London. Any manager would be lucky to have him in their squad.