Tottenham’s assistant head coach Cristian Stellini has revealed that Antonio Conte was emotionally drained from having to watch the game from the stands at Marseille.
All four teams in Group D had destiny in their own hands heading into the final group game on Tuesday and there were plenty of twists and turns over the 90 minutes in Lisbon and Marseille.
Spurs were staring at the possibility of elimination when Igor Tudor’s side took the lead just before the half-time whistle but the North Londoners managed to turn things around in the second half and come away with a 2-1 win, thus sealing the top spot in the Group.
Conte had to watch from the stands after picking up a red card following his side’s draw against Sporting Lisbon last week.
The Tottenham head coach was seen celebrating wildly in the stand when Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg scored a stoppage-time winner to send the Lilywhites through (EuroFoot).
After the game, Stellini revealed that Conte would have much rather been on the sidelines and that the 53-year-old found it difficult to watch on from the stands.
When asked if he had spoken to Conte after the final whistle, the Spurs assistant head coach told Football.London: “I had the possibility to talk with Antonio. He was very tired.
“He lived the game in the crowd, it’s not normal. Maybe he spent more energy in the stands than he normally spends on the touchline.”
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Given that Conte kicks and heads every ball, and constantly shouts instructions at his players, he must have felt quite helpless at not having any control over proceedings. The 53-year-old would have wanted to get some messages across at half-time but thankfully, Stellini’s half-time team talk did the trick.
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