Antonio Conte appealed for patience and transfer activity after a 2-1 loss to Newcastle, but he could have Mauricio Pochettino’s shadow hanging over him.
Goals from Callum Wilson and Miguel Almiron secured victory for Newcastle at St James Park, with Harry Kane’s second-half strike nothing more than a consolation.
The result makes it back-to-back defeats for Conte’s Spurs, who were thoroughly outplayed by Manchester United midweek in a 2-0 defeat that could have been more heavy-handed.
The north London side are still third in the Premier League table despite a difficult October, but are now five points off the top of the league despite having played one game more.
Their five-time league-winning England and Italy boss Conte came with a solid reputation when he signed in November last year, and reaffirmed his belief that rebuilding will take time.
Asked about the post-match result, he replied: “It means we need time, patience.
“I spoke about two, three transfer windows before, those were my words before, not now to twist the words or find an excuse after a defeat.
“I have the experience to understand the path we have to take, it can happen that you can lose a game against Newcastle today and I have no complaints about my players for the commitment for the behavior, for desire what I saw tonight.
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Despite an angry talkSPORT caller who thinks Conte has had enough time at the club, Spurs fan and former Crystal Palace and Newcastle star Darren Ambrose agrees with his club boss that it takes time.
“Third in the Premier League, Spurs are,” he explained. “I’ve lost three games this season, lost to Arsenal who are top of the league.
“Lost to Manchester United who finally click and play well and it was Spurs’ worst performance this season.
“Lost to Newcastle which no one knows what Newcastle will do this season, they only lost one game – to Liverpool – in the 98th minute.
“These are the three teams that Spurs lost to, Conte has already said they don’t have the quality to win the Premier League, no one is saying they’re going to win the Premier League.
“We want to see them get as close to winning the Premier League as possible, but it’s a low point at the moment, losing two games on the rebound, but coming and calling one of your best managers, if not your best manager, leave because he lost a few, absolutely not.
“You have to support Conte, you have to give him two or three more transfer windows, which he is asking for.
“If he goes, reprimand him as much as you want because he would have let Tottenham down but give him windows, allow him to change to a player he doesn’t like, Emerson Royal…
“We have to give him the opportunity to change that, he had two transfer windows, came in [Rodrigo] Bentancur and [Dejan] Kulusevski who have been fantastic signings and this summer brought a lot of players to improve the team, he needs time, you can’t call him because of a few bad games.
talkSPORT host and transfer expert Alex Crook had other ideas, however.
With talk of Conte returning to Juventus earlier this year, those rumors have once again surfaced with the Italian side a complete mess this season under Massimiliano Allegri.
And it comes at a time when the former Spurs boss has ruled himself out of the Aston Villa job as he awaits bigger things…
“Can I make a little prediction?” Crook started. “I will look into my crystal ball and tell you what will happen at Tottenham in the future.
“Antonio Conte hasn’t signed a new contract yet, Juventus and Max Allegri are under pressure.
“Conte goes back to Juventus, Mauricio Pochettino, wanted by Aston Villa, is distancing himself because he expects something bigger, back at Tottenham.
“That’s what’s gonna happen, you mark my words, you heard it here first.”