Antonio Conte embarrassed to leave Man Utd as Tottenham show what they lack – Darren Lewis

Tottenham are still in the running for a Champions League spot thanks to a 3-1 win over West Ham when boss Antonio Conte sent an embarrassing message to Manchester United


Craziness. The continuing presence of Tottenham in the race for the top 4.

Especially when you consider – considering Chelsea’s game in hand – Antonio Contes Men are now fifth, just eight points behind the third-placed European champions. Harry Kane and Son Heung Min are the reasons for this. Take the match winners against West Ham out of this squad and Spurs end up in midfield at best.

With them, the north Londoners can continue to dream of salvaging a Champions League place from the ashes of a chaotic season. With 19 assists each Kane and son have scored 38 goals in the Premier League combined, the most goals in the history of the competition.

You are the Batman to each other’s Robin. The Captain America to the other’s Winter Soldier. The tango to mutual cash. In fact, it’s hard to tell which of these two is the hero and which is the sidekick, such was their incredible contribution to a seemingly hopeless cause.

In the last three months, Spurs have been outclassed by Chelsea, embarrassed at home by Southampton and Wolves and the white flag waved by Burnley. And yet they are there, just a win away, to draw level with fourth-placed Arsenal despite the Gunners playing a game more.

There’s a reason Antonio Conte’s name rang out before the final whistle at Tottenham Hotspur’s stadium. The former Chelsea boss has transformed a side that was shambolic in September – and at several points since – into a side poised to claw their way into the top four.

Tottenham boss Antonio Conte was a typically animated character in their Premier League win over West Ham

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how Manchester United must be ashamed of turning their noses up when they yell about the work ethic he demands of his players.

The Reds are now looking at a Tottenham side that West Ham just couldn’t handle. David Moyes’ men – after last Thursday’s epic Europa League win over Sevilla to reach the quarter-finals – looked to their feet early on.

They were slow to react after eight minutes when Kane crossed for Son and the ball landed on defender Kurt Zouma’s knee. Fifteen minutes later, Son himself doubled the lead with a similar great move. Rodrigo Bentancur on the left brought the ball in to Kulusevski. The Swede again exchanged passes with Kane before handing them to Son.

This time the shot by the South Korean keeper Lukasz Fabianski didn’t stand a chance. The problem is that Spurs are still unable to defend themselves and life will continue to be a rollercoaster ride for them as long as it stays that way. With ten minutes remaining, Craig Dawson flicked the ball from an Aaron Creswell corner and Said Benrahma slammed it clear of the back post.

It stayed that way despite a resurgence from Moyes’ men in the second half, when Michail Antonio volleyed across the box in the 56th minute. But Son sent Spurs out of sight in the 89th minute after a long kick from goalkeeper Hugo Lloris aimed to free him. The helper? Kane.

Conte has had some incredible successes at far higher quality clubs in his legendary career. But after resurrecting Kane and Son, if he could blast Spurs into the Champions League it would be spot on – after everything the troubled north Londoners have been through this season.

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Continue reading Antonio Conte embarrassed to leave Man Utd as Tottenham show what they lack - Darren Lewis

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