Tottenham: Antonio Conte made 'surprise decision' at Hotspur Way | OneFootball

Tottenham: Antonio Conte made 'surprise decision' at Hotspur Way

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Tottenham manager Antonio Conte not starting any of his new signings against Southampton was a “slight surprise”, according to Daily Star journalist Paul Brown.

Conte’s side made the perfect start to the Premier League season when they came from behind to beat Saints 4-1 in north London and did it without any of their summer recruits in the starting line up.

What happened against Southampton?

Following the optimism from the end of last season, coupled with their impressive transfer window, expectations were understandably high at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

That enthusiasm wasn’t put into practice early on, though, with James Ward-Prowse’s early strike putting Southampton into a shock lead.

But Tottenham are made of stern stuff under Conte’s guidance and less than 20 minutes later had turned the game around, with Eric Dier and Ryan Sessegnon heading home their first top-flight goals since 2019.

And Spurs put the result beyond doubt with two further goals in the space of three second-half minutes when Mohammed Salisu turned into his own net before Dejan Kulusevski swept home his first ever goal in north London.

With Tottenham in a comfortable position, Conte opted to introduce three of his summer signings, with Fraser Forster, Djed Spence and Richarlison the exceptions, highlighting the strength in depth the Italian has at his disposal.

What did Brown say about Tottenham?

He told GIVEMESPORT: “It does look like quite a strong squad compared to last season.

You have to remember Richarlison couldn’t play anyway because he was banned, but it was a slight surprise to not see him start with any new faces.

“They all came in at different times, so some of them have had more time to get used to the new system than others.”

Could any of Tottenham’s new signings start against Chelsea?

The first aspect to consider here is will Conte want to change a winning team.

A trip to Chelsea represents a completely different challenge to playing a struggling Southampton side at home, but the Tottenham boss is unlikely to shuffle his pack for the sake of it.

He might be tempted to introduce Clement Lenglet, Ivan Perisic or Richarlison, but the players they would be replacing, Ben Davies, Sessegnon and Kulusevski were all in excellent form, which all-but rules out that trio making their full debuts.

The only other potential dilemma could be bringing Yves Bissouma into the XI, although the ex-Brighton star hasn’t had much game-time in recent weeks, which should allow Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and Rodrigo Bentancur to keep their places.

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