After taking his first steps into coaching with his former club, Spurs legend Jermain Defoe says he hopes to be a manager just like Antonio Conte one day.

This week, Tottenham confirmed the 39-year-old has been added to the backroom staff at Hotspur Way.

Defoe retired in March of this year, ending a 23-year playing career which saw him turn out for seven different clubs, and make 57 appearances for his country (Transfermarkt).

Spurs moved quickly to add Defoe to their staff and have been supporting him in acquiring his coaching badges. The club hero will work across the Under-17s to U21s squads at Tottenham while he continues his journey towards his UEFA B Licence.

With 143 goals across two spells at the North London club, Defoe is currently the sixth highest-scorer in the club’s history (MyFootballFacts) and a certified Spurs legend.

However, in an interview with the Evening Standard, Defoe revealed he has his own role model to look up to at the moment.

He said: “One day, hopefully when I’m a manager, I’d coach just like Conte. I’d want my team to be the fittest in the league. There’s nothing better as a player [than] when you’re fit and you can run all day without fatigue.

“I went in a few weeks ago and had a conversation with him. He spoke to me about the physical element of the game. You need a tactical element of course, but you have to be willing to work harder than the other team.

“He’s a really nice guy but he just has that relentless attitude to want to win, to want to improve every single day.

“I took so much from Di Canio in terms of being professional, doing things the right way and working hard. That’s always been within me.

“So [with] Conte, I’m just like, ‘Wow he’s one of the best’. His CV speaks for itself. He’s a winner. He wants to win now. It’s an exciting time for the football club.”

Spurs Web Opinion

You could do a lot worse than harbour ambitions of emulating Antonio Conte when it comes to forging a career in management, and now Jermain Defoe will get to work with the Italian up close as he embarks on his journey in coaching.

Here’s hoping Defoe can make a success of himself at Spurs, and move up the coaching ladder quickly. We’re sure he will make a great manager one day.

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