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‘I have to say’: Gary Neville now makes claim about Antonio Conte’s Tottenham side after North London Derby loss
Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

‘I have to say’: Gary Neville now makes claim about Antonio Conte’s Tottenham side after North London Derby loss

Gary Neville has been speaking on his podcast and has now made a claim about Antonio Conte’s Tottenham Hotspur side after the north London derby loss against Arsenal. 

Spurs fell to a disappointing 3-1 defeat against their bitter rivals Arsenal yesterday. Conte’s men enjoyed a decent spell in the first-half after Harry Kane’s penalty cancelled out Thomas Partey’s opener. 

But Tottenham were underwhelming for most of the game and deservedly suffered their first loss of the Premier League campaign. 

And Neville has now claimed that Conte’s side were ‘poor’ on the day and has questioned the Italian’s tactics during the game. 

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Neville makes claim about Conte’s Tottenham 

Speaking on the Gary Neville Podcast, the Manchester United legend was asked about the success of counter-attacking sides in modern football.

Neville feels ‘pragmatic’ teams like Spurs are having less joy in the Premier League. 

“We’ve seen it coming over the years now that the dominant team, the one who enjoys the ball and wants the ball, is winning a lot more of these games,” he said.  

“We’ve seen the less proactive teams and more pragmatic teams that want to play on the counter-attack not having the success that they once could have. And the direct teams that play the ball forward quickly – nowhere near having the success that they once had.

“I have to say, yesterday I thought Spurs were awful. I don’t think we should apologise for saying that. 

“I thought their ambition was poor, I thought that they played too deep. I think it sent a message to Arsenal.

“Yes, they got back into the game and you’re thinking Conte can win a game like that. We’ve seen managers over the years who have been brilliant at winning games in that passive manner where they sit back and wait, then they’ll go get a counter-attack. 

“But we’re seeing a lot less of it. It’s becoming a lot less of a theory that can succeed in football. Yesterday, I have to say that Arsenal won the game well and it makes the team that are trying that tactic of sitting back look really poor. 

“It makes them look awful and it makes them look negative like they’ve got no idea.” 

Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Neville also went on to claim that Leicester City’s 2015-16 side are the only counter-attacking team to win the Premier League in recent history. 

He added: “I think that we’re seeing less success with that type of football. Other than Leicester, can you think of a team that have not dominated possession most of the time that have won this league in the last 15-20 years? 

“You don’t see it. You have to be a very proactive team on the front-foot, pressing and doing all the right things.” 

Conte won’t be too disheartened after the loss, especially after Spurs have gotten off to a decent start in the league. 

His side have put in some underwhelming displays this season but have managed to grind out positive results. 

Spurs came undone yesterday but were certainly in the game before Emerson Royal was sent off for a challenge on Gabriel Martinelli. 

Conte’s men created some decent openings in the first-half and limited Arsenal. But the Italian will certainly expect to see improved performances from his players over the coming weeks.

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