Kane: Conte appointment shows ‘great ambition’


Harry Kane has said Tottenham Hotspur have shown “great ambition” by appointing Antonio Conte as head coach and added that the Italian can make him a better player.

Conte replaced Nuno Espirito Santo earlier this week and guided Spurs to victory in his opening game on Thursday with a 3-2 Europa Conference League win over Vitesse Arnhem.

Kane was not on the scoresheet and has struggled to recapture his best form this season after attempting to force through a move to Manchester City only to be told to honour his £200,000-a-week contract, which has just over two-and-a-half years left to run.

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The 28-year-old’s motivation to continue at Tottenham has consequently been questioned but he hailed the significance of Conte’s arrival while acknowledging a difficult run in which he has scored just once in nine Premier League games.

“It [Conte’s appointment] shows great ambition to be honest,” he said. “His resume speaks for itself, everyone knows how highly thought of he is and what he has done as a manager in the game.

“You have to respect that. He will work as hard as he can to improve us as players but it is about us as players, taking it in, learning, doing more on the pitch, doing more in training, doing more away from training — whether it is recovery or anything like that. And making sure we give ourselves every opportunity to win. We have a manager and a club that believe in us and the appointment definitely shows that.

“I am a player that always believes in myself and always believes in my ability. I am 28 years old, I have still got a lot to learn, a lot to improve on. It’s not been the start I wanted, the team wanted or the club wanted so we all know that. We all have to take responsibility for that as players.

“It is not something I am worried about, I will keep working and I am really excited about working with this manager, I am sure he can improve me and that is an exciting thing.

“When you have done what I have done in the game so far and still feel like there is more to come, that is definitely exciting so I am looking forward to it.”

Nuno was sacked after just 17 games in charge but the players were also heavily criticised for underperforming after losing five of their first 10 Premier League games and ahead of Sunday’s trip to Everton, Kane admitted there was no hiding place for the squad now under Conte.

“He definitely brings a lot of passion, a lot of determination, whether that’s on the training pitch or in meetings, in the dressing room,” added the Spurs and England captain.

“He has won trophies at the highest level with the biggest clubs so everyone is excited to learn, excited to work under him and that passion he shows every day, every meeting, every training session is what you thrive on. You go into games wanting to put your body on the line for him and you can feel that already.

“It’s about us and how we take it in because he has done it, he has nothing to prove. He has done it on the biggest stage with the biggest teams so he will give us everything he has to improve us and now it is down to us as players to have no excuses.

“We have to make sure every minute of our lives we are trying to improve and win for this team and that is the only way we are going to move forward.”

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