If anyone can turn Tottenham Hotspur from perennial nearly men into champions at last, it’s Antonio Conte.
Juventus hadn’t won the Serie A title in six years before they handed their former midfield lynchpin the keys to the Old Lady’s house in 2011. They would go on to lift the Scudetto in each of the next three seasons, the beginning of a decade of dominance.
Chelsea finished tenth in the English top flight in 2016 but, 12 months later, ribbons on the Premier League trophy had turned blue again.
On Sunday it was Inter Milan’s turn to pay tribute to the one-man winning machine that is Conte. It had taken 11 years but the Nerazzurri were reclaiming their place at the summit of Italian football.
Unfortunately for Romelu Lukaku, Lautaro Martinez and others, however, Conte doesn’t tend to stick around for long. The 51-year-old would make Jose Mourinho look easy going and, while he put differences with his San Siro bosses aside, rifts remain.
According to Corriere dello Sport, it’s far from certain Conte – having never spent more than three years in the same post – will be sticking around to defend his crown.
Tottenham have held talks and even discussed terms with the one-time Italy boss as they attempt to lure him back to England.
Now, comparisons between Conte and Mourinho are unavoidable.
Both would arrive in north London after spells down the road at Chelsea and both would arrive with a proven track record. The key difference, however, is Conte remains a man at the top of his game whereas Mourinho, greying and increasingly downtrodden, feels like a man out of his time.
Chelsea supporters know all too well the transformative impact Conte can make at a club down on their luck. And for many at Stamford Bridge, the prospect of Conte turning Tottenham into a domestic force doesn’t bear thinking about.
Here’s what some Spurs supporters had to say on Twitter about the situation: