Antonio Conte opens up on failed Tottenham Hotspur attempt to sign Luis Diaz in January
Antonio Conte has delivered his verdict on Tottenham Hotspur’s failed attempt to sign Luis Diaz in the January transfer window. The winger ended up joining his preferred destination in Liverpool, and he has been an outstanding performer for them since the winter move.
Tottenham were keen on getting their hands on Diaz back in January. Managing Director of Football Fabio Paratici had held meetings with Porto, and a move was seemingly getting closer before the Reds ramped up their efforts to steal a march on Spurs. Jurgen Klopp’s side initially wanted him in the summer but had changed their stance following Paratici’s approach.
Speaking in an open interview (h/t Football.London), Conte has expressed that they tried to see whether signing the Colombian international was possible in January. He declared Diaz to be a “top player” and mentioned how they needed to try and get their hands on someone of his quality.
“We knew [Diaz] was a top player. I think Paratici tried to see the possibility to sign him, but in the same way, we signed Kulusevski and to see the capacity of this player to come into our team, like Rodrigo Bentancur. When there is an important player, it is important to try to sign him because you know a top player will improve your team and the quality of your squad. If you want to win something, for sure you need players at the top, not medium level players.”
Transfer blow, but is it?
Losing out on a world-class player like the 25-year-old in and of itself is a damning blow indeed. However, that may not be the case this time around, as we were able to bring in Rodrigo Bentancur and Dejan Kulusevski instead, which has proved to be a great piece of business from the North Londoners.
After all, Bentancur and Kulusevski have helped us raise our level and challenge for a top-four finish in the Premier League, which seemed like a distant possibility before their arrival. While Diaz has been a success for the Merseyside club, the current circumstances indicate that the way things turned out was in the best interest of all the parties.
At the same time, the Italian boss’s words could be interpreted as a message to the board. One could say that he is demanding the management to target players of similar nature if there are plans to win something in the future.
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Trophies have eluded us for quite a long time, and we finally have a chance to end that drought under a world-class coach like Conte. However, he would need the right tools to bring silverware to N17, which indicates the need to sign top-notch players similar to Diaz in the future.
With the summer transfer window drawing closer by the day, let’s hope that Daniel Levy and co. would be willing to back the man in charge in the way that he prefers. That would give us the best chance to win something looking at how Conte has brought in success at his previous clubs.