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Tottenham boss Antonio Conte believes Manchester United remain “monsters” in world football, but is working hard to see his group see themselves through at Old Trafford on Wednesday.
The Italian has repeatedly discussed the energy spending aspects of Erik ten Hag during the opening months of the season, especially regarding Spurs’ personal way in the transfer market.
Although Tottenham are enjoying their best marketing campaign in 59 years, Conte is keen to play down their title bid, but knows that a win towards one of the top six in midweek would be a step forward for his players.
“United for now and in the future will be a monster that you have to deal with. They have great potential from an economic aspect,” he said.
“On Wednesday it will be another important game. I think, compared to last season, we have improved in many aspects.
“But when you play against United, especially at Old Trafford, it will be a difficult game. At the same time I like the fact that this test comes now. We have to know very well what our ambitions are and keep trying to get good results.
Conte revealed that he was pursued by Sir Alex Ferguson during his happy days but wanted to stay and end his career at Juventus.
United usually win the Premier League title at that stage, but have not had success in the English top flight since 2013.
The 53-year-old believes the “big mistake” is behind him, having lost to Manchester City and Liverpool so far.
He added: “To play at Old Trafford is not easy, it is not easy. It is not a good place for opponents. There is a fantastic atmosphere, but at the same time it is a great theater, you have to go there and play with personality, play football, ideas .
“This period is not a good time for United compared to 10 years ago, but just two years ago, don’t forget that United were fighting for the Premier League and were second behind City.
“We are talking about a team that, if we don’t make a big mistake, will stay in the top four, play the Champions League and fight for titles and trophies.
“I want my team to go in there and play with personality, with the desire to get three points. I think it will be a good step for us to go there and play with personality and try to win.”
Harry Kane may be at the center of Spurs’ hopes with 10 goals in 15 appearances for the club this term, but he could be forgiven for having one eye on the next World Cup after watching his England team-mates Kyle Walker and Reece James not long ago suffer accidents. which could exclude him from the event in Qatar.
Conte said that going forward all the focus is on Tottenham and he hopes that this will be the main contender in the world that he will play during the season.
“I can say that Harry wants to play every game. A player who wants to play every game is not afraid of injury or it will not happen in the World Cup,” he said.
“Harry, like the other players, is very focused on Tottenham. I am happy to see this commitment and behavior from my players.
“Of course we talk about important competitions with the World Cup, but at the same time I can talk about the players and I believe in my players. I believe in their commitment. I know that they really focus 100 percent for our club and for me that’s enough for this.
“In my opinion, the whole football environment should complain at the right time, not now.
“I think that after this experience it should be good and then we say, ‘we’re done now, let’s keep doing it like before’.
“What we did in the past was perfect for everyone. I was a player in the World Cup, I played in the European Championship and to repeat this situation again I am not happy.
“After we have seen many problematic situations, there is no doubt about it. It is okay to have the World Cup (winter), then stop and come back in the summer.