Teddy Sheringham Exclusive: Winning A Trophy More Important
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Teddy Sheringham Exclusive: Winning A Trophy More Important

Tottenham legend Teddy Sheringham has insisted that his former club need a trophy even more than Champions League football. Spurs have not secured silverware since claiming the League Cup in 2008 – finishing as runners-up three times in the competition since then, as well as falling short in the 2019 Champions League final. Antonio Conte's men are in the mix for a top-four Premier League finish this term, sitting eighth and five points behind fourth-placed West Ham, but with three games in hand on the Irons. Sheringham considers both achievements important, but feels that tangible success should be Tottenham's priority.


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FA Cup Win More Important

Speaking exclusively to Genting, he said: “Top four is essential if Tottenham want to go to the next level. 

“You’ve got Man United, West Ham, who I’m not going to rule out, Tottenham, Arsenal. Wolves might even be in the mix. I don’t see anyone else challenging for that fourth position. 

“All of those clubs want that fourth position because the Champions League is massive. The money is massive. 

“If [Conte] could deliver the FA Cup, wow, what a start to his regime as a Tottenham manager. 

“If I’m honest, if Tottenham missed out on Champions League football and won the FA Cup, they would be absolutely delighted. 

“They need the cup more than the money to go to the next level, to get the right vibes from everyone at Tottenham. 

“They need to win a trophy. I’ve been saying it for years. That is more important than the money from the Champions League to Tottenham right now.”

Daniel Levy Praise

Sheringham also praised Spurs’ chairman Daniel Levy for his determination to bring in an elite head coach – and believes the appointment of Conte is a real coup for the club.

“I think in some ways you’ve got to credit Daniel Levy,” he continued. 

“I mean, he got it wrong with the Nuno [Espirito Santo] appointment, but credit to Tottenham for going out there and showing the ambition to get a guy like Conte. 

“Because if a guy like that walks in a dressing room, someone who’s won so many things in Italy and England, all of a sudden does the vibe just change like that? 

“[The players might think], ‘Hang on a minute, this guy’s a proper manager,’ maybe the mindset does change and, you know, the players in that dressing room are thinking, ‘well he wouldn’t have come here unless he’s coming in to win.’

“First and foremost, I don’t think you can ever accuse Daniel Levy of not trying to make the football club better. 

“To sack [Mauricio] Pochettino when everybody’s thinking, ‘I know they had a three or four month spell where it wasn’t great under Pochettino,’ it might have looked a little bit stale [and] he made the decision. He sacked a manager that’s taken them to the Champions League final, that’s a big move. 

“Then he’s got [Jose] Mourinho in, a proven winner on top money and said, ‘Take this club to a better level.’ Levy’s trying to do that. Okay, it didn’t happen with Mourinho. 

“Nuno, an up and coming coach with great results at Wolves, perhaps not the high profile manager that some people wanted. But he’s made a decision, bang, next one in. He quickly sees it isn’t working, bang, next man in. 

“He asks himself, ‘who is the best manager that we can appoint at this club now?’ Bang, Conte. 

“He has tried everything to make Tottenham better, and you’ve got to take your hat off to that. 

“Conte coming in and performing the way he has done, in the manner that he has done, I said at the time, I think he was the perfect fit for Tottenham. 

“He comes in with his desire and his discipline. He’s disciplined, first and foremost. He has got those players understanding what it is to be a professional footballer, to perform at the highest level. 

“For all the Tottenham supporters watching week in, week out, they will respect the players on the pitch. 

“That’s what fans want to see on Saturday afternoon. They want to see players dying with passion, making a difference and that’s what he demands from his players.”

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