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Spurs have made two signings in the wing-back area this summer as Antonio Conte looks to strengthen his back four


Jul-20 15:11 first published at 15:11 PM

Following his appointment as Tottenham Hotspur manager in November, Antonio Conte immediately changed the team’s formation. Spurs lined up against Vitesse Arnhem in a 3-4-3 system despite extremely limited time on the training pitch with the Italian, who had huge success with his three-man defence and wing-backs at both Chelsea and Inter Milan. While Conte has tinkered with the formation slightly, opting for a 3-5-2 at times, the three-man defense and wing-backs have remained since his first game in charge, despite getting great joy from the wing-back areas in his previous two jobs. The same cannot be said of his early months in N17. A system that suits both Matt Doherty and Ryan Sessegnon due to their attacking abilities, Sergio Reguilon and Emerson Royal have had to adapt rather quickly to the position, having both previously played as full-backs. It may not appear to be a significant change, but their struggles there have been noticeable. The intriguing shift in Tottenham’s summer transfer strategy under Antonio Conte and Fabio Paratici Apart from Doherty, who improved his game and reclaimed his Wolves form from February until he suffered a knee injury at the start of April, Conte did not get the numbers he desired from the other three players. That meant that change would be constant this summer in both positions. Ivan Perisic arrived on a free transfer from Inter Milan, a player Conte knows well from his time at the San Siro. After weeks of speculation, Djed Spence’s long-awaited move from Middlesbrough was finally confirmed on Tuesday morning. Both players thrive as wing-backs, and it is hoped that Conte’s Spurs team will thrive with the duo making marauding runs down the flanks and finding themselves in the right positions to both score and assist. Perisic, after all, had 10 goals and nine assists in 48 appearances for the Nerazzurri last season, while Spence had three goals and five assists for Steve Cooper’s Nottingham Forest. Conte has three players to choose from on either flank as things stand ahead of the opening Premier League game against Southampton. Spurs may have a fourth option on the right after Lucas Moura played as a wing-back in two pre-season friendlies in South Korea and impressed his manager. As important as it is for Spurs to bring in players this summer, it is also critical that some are now moved on to avoid having a bloated squad. This will only complicate the process of naming 25 players for both the Premier League and the Champions League. Reguilon, who was left out of Spurs’ squad for South Korea and instead remained at Hotspur Way to train, appears to be on his way out of the club before the transfer deadline. The writing appears to be on the wall for the Spaniard, with Fabio Paratici also set to face a critical decision regarding what happens now that Spence is a Tottenham player. His arrival could push one of Doherty or Emerson out, with the latter heavily linked with a return to La Liga. Keeping Doherty would give Spurs three options on the left, as he can play there even though it is not his natural position, with Lucas providing a third option on the right if needed. Paratici and Conte still have work to do to complete their playing squad for the new season, and two transfers out will complete the wing-back positions. Spurs, a summer transfer priority for Conte, are now in a position where they ideally need to part with two after their transfer incomings. READ NEXT: Djed Spence’s first thoughts on Tottenham’s new signing, Ryan Sessegnon and what he will bring to the club Transfers and news from Tottenham LIVE: The most recent news and rumors from Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. Tottenham Hotspur Premier League fixture list for 2022/23 Lucas Moura discusses his Conte talks, his future at Tottenham, and what Richarlison is really like. Son Heung-min explains what happened between him and ‘quality’ Richarlison previously.

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