As Son Heung-Min swung in what was one of 19 corners, Rodrigo Bentancur was lurking in the box ready to act on what happened next.
The ball arced towards Bentancur who managed an initial header which was blocked. It fell kindly back to the Argentine who then calmly side-footed the ball past defenders and the Bournemouth goalkeeper. The Tottenham Hotspur away support were sent into ecstasy. But their usually animated manager, Antonio Conte stormed down the tunnel. Was he upset? Conte revealed all in his post-match press conference.
This Is Why Antonio Conte Stormed Down the Tunnel Despite Spurs’ Last-Gasp Winner
Conte said: “I came back when I knew the goal was regular. I thought in my mind and my heart that I could have a heart attack because in two days to score and then have a goal disallowed. I said I go down and then stay calm, and then I wait for the decision of the referee. But for sure, it was great to see the desire of my players and the reaction they had.”
Fans are so used to seeing Conte sprinting up and down the touchline, especially when an important goal goes in. But having already received a ban for the Marseille fixture, the Spurs manager could not afford any more late drama. Thankfully the goal stood, Conte was relaxed and his team took a very well-earned three points.
Conte could not heap enough praise onto his players for staying strong and bouncing back from the 2-0 deficit.
“I also repeat the nastiness they put into the pitch because I have seen in the eyes of my players the desire to win this game. Also, when we drew 2-2 and then in our mind, the only thought was to take the ball and start to play again. This reaction was really positive, and I want this from my players.”
The manager speaks of a “nastiness” or perhaps a mental resolve that Spurs have so often lacked over the past few years. Overcoming a 2-0 deficit away from home is no mean feat. It is a sign that Tottenham have begun to move past their recent defeats to Newcastle United and Manchester United.
Taking Bournemouth Positives Into Marseille Match
Spurs must now take the mental resilience that they showed against Bournemouth into the Marseille clash. There is a much bigger prize at stake which is progress into the Champions League knockout stages.
Sadly Conte will have to watch on from the stands due to his sending-off after the would-be Sporting winner last week. He cannot speak to the players before or during the match. But he has good staff behind him including the likes of Ryan Mason, Cristian Stellini, Gianluca Conte, Costantino Coratti and Stefano Bruno. Conte will also be able to train with his players on Monday morning where he can give his last bits of advice.
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“VAR is doing a lot of damage. I want to see if in another stadium of a big team if they are ready to disallow this type of goal. I’d like to know this.
“A lot of injustice. I don’t like this type of situation. I see not positive things.
– BT Sport pic.twitter.com/ZM33l7p0DM
— The Spurs Web (@thespursweb) October 26, 2022