Antonio Conte hints at real reason for Tottenham talks breaking down

“If there’s something that doesn’t convince me I prefer not to accept.”

Antonio Conte has opened up on his motivation after talks with Tottenham Hotspur collapsed last week.

Conte was believed to be the front-runner to replace Jose Mourinho but discussions fell apart last Friday night, forcing the North London club to switch focus in their hunt for a new manager.

It was reported at the time that Spurs pulled out of the talks for three reasons; namely Conte’s demands to strengthen the playing squad, concerns about the Italian’s reluctance to work with young players and reservations about the size of his backroom team.

Talks between Antonio Conte and Tottenham broke down last week

Conte has broken his silence for the first time since the Spurs negotiations and hinted that it was he who turned down the opportunity to join the club because he was unconvinced by the project.

“Generally, I like the challenges and I’ve accepted many of them during my career,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“Even the top clubs I coached were never the favourites when I arrived. However, if there’s something that doesn’t convince me I prefer not to accept regardless of the money.”

Conte surprised many when he decided to leave Inter Milan last month, just weeks after delivering the club’s first Serie A title in over a decade.

The 51-year-old insisted that money is the least of his priorities when it comes to deciding where he wants to work, reiterating that excitement regarding the project is much more important.

“The market sets the price, but had I been obsessed by money, I would have stayed where I was in the past,” Conte added. “I would have accepted compromises and obtained new contracts.

“I look for the projects instead and I am ready to stay at home if something is not convincing me. It has to do with vision, honesty and principles.”

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