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20th Nov 2021

Conte warns Spurs players he’ll know if they break food rules

Daniel Brown

Conte really, really, really hates sauces

Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte has warned his players that he will find out if they break his food rules.

The former Chelsea boss has implemented a number of nutritional rules at Spurs since he arrived at the helm earlier this month, including a ketchup and pizza ban.

The Italian, who is determined to improve players’ sleeping patterns, has also provided specific sex rules during stints at previous clubs.

While Conte understand that he can only control players’ behaviour while they are at the training ground, he has insisted that the club nutritionist will help him find out if they aren’t playing by his rules.

“I can see the results from the nutritionist and I can see if this is okay or not okay and maybe you are not doing well outside the training centre,” he said.

“This is a part of it, to improve the players in many aspects and to make the players understand. The pitch and the game is only the final part of your work.

“You have to prepare your body and your mind. Also, your heart and your passion to do this.

“I did this not only at Chelsea and Juventus and Inter Milan, but also when I was in Serie B with Siena.

“I was the same because I think I had an important experience as a player and I am trying to bring this into my coaching and my relationships with the players.”

The 52-year-old believes that in order to be ‘professional’, you need to take care of your body – with sleep and nutrition playing a crucial role in that.

He added: “I consider good nutrition and attitude very important because for the player it is not only important the training or the game. I think you have to prepare yourself in the best possible way.

“Sleep is very important and to eat well is very important. These two aspects help the player recover quicker.

“If you have the correct nutrition and sleep, you can recover quickly, you are ready to work, also sometimes to work very hard and to avoid injuries. To be professional, it means to have all these situations in your mind.

“I spoke to the nutritionist. This aspect is important because you have to have good fat and good muscle. This is a part of our work and the players’ work.”

Conte also discussed how, at the beginning of his stints at previous clubs, some players struggled to understand his methods, adding: “I am going slowly, slowly because now the priority is to work very well on the pitch, to make the physical, tactical and mental aspects the priority.

“For sure, we are going step by step. We want to improve every aspect of my players.

“Usually when I start to work with players, maybe at the start someone cannot understand something like this, but then when they start to understand, they don’t go away from it.”

Conte will take charge of his first home Premier League when his side take on Leeds United on Sunday, having beaten Vitesse Arnhem 3-2 in his first game in the hot-seat and drawing 0-0 against Everton prior to the international break.

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