The animosity between Antonio Conte and Pepijn Lijnders is over, Tottenham Hotspur coach Antonio Conte said after the game against Liverpool. Conte was shown a yellow card twenty minutes before the end for knocking the ball out of Lijnders’ hands.
As Tottenham sought an equaliser, Conte instructed Andy Robertson to make quick work of a throw-in. Tottenham assistant coach Cristian Stellini passed the ball to Robertson, while Liverpool assistant coach Lijnders held another. Conte became enraged by Lijnders’ conduct and swatted the ball out of his hands, earning the Italian a yellow card.
Antonio Conte and Pepijn Lijnders encounter: The Italian reacts
“The assistant coach had the ball and refused to give it up. Everything is fine. I have great admiration for Jurgen Klopp and his assistant,” Conte emphasised this following the game. When asked if Tottenham should have taken at least one point from the game, he began his press conference by referring to Klopp.
“Before I answer that, was Jürgen pleased with how we played? Yes? It’s critical to understand his point of view, “Conte stated sarcastically. He was alluding to Klopp’s remark after their 1-1 draw at Anfield in May, when the German declared Tottenham’s football was “not his kind of football.”
“Jürgen is an excellent coach. We ultimately lost today. I’m pleased with how we performed at Anfield. Then it was 1-1, which was a better result than now,” the coach added. “I’m pleased with our performance.” Conte thought the first half was also promising. “Then you’ll undoubtedly say, “But your team was 2-0 down.” That’s correct, but we demonstrated that we intended to put a lot of pressure on it.”
Attacking football had a downside, the trainer had to admit. “It also resulted in Liverpool’s second goal.” After a long ball from Alisson Becker, Eric Dier unhappily headed the ball back towards Hugo Lloris, allowing Mohamed Salah to intervene and eventually score. “By putting high pressure on you, you are vulnerable with long balls. Eric was unfortunate,” he concluded.