Antonio Conte returns to London TODAY after spell in Italy as under-fire boss prepares to come back to the dugout for Tottenham’s Champions League clash with Milan… amid growing expectation he will LEAVE the club at the end of the season
- Antonio Conte returns to London on Sunday after recovering from surgery
- He arrives on the back of costly defeats this week to Sheffield United and Wolves
- There is growing expectancy that the Italian will leave at the end of the season
Antonio Conte arrives back in London today amid growing expectation that he will leave Tottenham before next season.
The Spurs head coach returned to Italy at the end of last month to continue recovering from surgery to remove his gallbladder but is returning to England on Sunday ahead of Wednesday’s crunch Champions League last 16 clash against AC Milan, where they’ll aim to overturn a 1-0 deficit from the first-leg.
Following last week’s shock FA Cup exit to Sheffield United, the competition is now the club’s only hope of ending their 15 year wait for a trophy.
Conte returns to work on the back of two successive defeats; his team – managed by assistant Cristian Stellini – losing 1-0 at Wolves on Saturday.
He also arrives with his long-term position as the club’s boss under significant uncertainty.
Antonio Conte returns to London on Sunday amid uncertainty over his Tottenham future
His return comes on the back of defeats to Sheffield United in the FA Cup and Wolves
Tottenham assistant Cristian Stellini (centre) had been in charge during his absence
The former Chelsea manager’s contract expires at the end of the season but there has been little progress on a potential extension.
Tottenham have an option to extend Conte’s existing deal by 12 months, but sources have indicated that there isn’t a major appetite to trigger that clause at the moment.
Indeed, there is a sense behind the scenes at Spurs that it is best for all parties to go their separate ways ahead of next season.
Conte has suffered upsetting personal trauma over the previous few months.
Notwithstanding his health problems, the former Italy International was deeply affected by the death of his long-term fitness coach Gian Piero Ventrone and former team-mates Sinisa Mihajlovic and Gianluca Vialli.
There have also been suggestions that the 53-year-old is keen for a return to Italy in order to move closer to loved ones.
Mauricio Pochettino would be a contender to return to Tottenham if Conte departs.
There is suggestion Conte wants to return to Italy so that he can move closer to his loved ones
Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy could be forced into looking for a new manager this summer
But while chairman Daniel Levy still holds a close relationship with the Argentine, other individuals at Tottenham will need convincing that any comeback for Pochettino is a good idea.
Sportsmail understands Nottingham Forest head coach Steve Cooper has admirers, while Eintracht Frankfurt boss Olivier Glasner may also emerge as an option.
With a place in the Champions League quarter-finals and a top-four position still to play for, it seems likely that a parting of ways will happen in the summer.
However, it remains to be seen how chairman Daniel Levy may react if Tottenham’s season declines – though as it stands there is no immediate plans to make a decision on Conte’s future before the season ends.