Tottenham's Antonio Conte hits out at Mikel Arteta over Premier League fixture row

Posted Saturday, March 19, 2022 by ESPN

Tottenham manager Antonio Conte has taken a dig at Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta for voicing his concerns about a potential Premier League fixture pile-up.

Arsenal's next match is an early kickoff at Aston Villa on Saturday, before a hectic run of fixtures on April 4, 9, 16 and then April 20 and 23 against close league rivals Chelsea and Manchester United.

Speaking in a news conference on Friday, Arteta expressed his concern for when the game at Spurs would be rearranged and said: "I don't know and we are not going to be deciding and it's going to be very important.

"That's nothing to do with me. The club has to arrange those conversations."

The north London derby was postponed in January after Arsenal cited a depleted squad due to COVID-19 cases, injuries and some players participating at the Africa Cup of Nations in Cameroon.

The Premier League board granted the postponement but Spurs released a statement at the time expressing their surprise and anger at the decision.

Tottenham's Antonio Conte hits out at Mikel Arteta over Premier League fixture row
Antonio Conte is unhappy with Mikel Arteta's comments about a fixture pile-up. Photo by LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images

When asked about Arteta's comments, Conte told reporters on Friday: "I only want Arteta to remember the game postponed -- Tottenham-Arsenal -- if we speak about unfair.

"In general, I think my answer is enough. If someone wants to think about fair or unfair. We postponed the game, Tottenham-Arsenal if you remember. I don't forget this. And it's not right to speak about fair or unfair."

Spurs have the chance to move up into fifth position if they beat West Ham United on Sunday.

Tottenham have already claimed a win over West Ham in the Carabao Cup earlier this season and Conte urged the supporters to push the team to another positive result.

"The fans have to play an important part in the game," he added. "They can help us by pushing us from the start until the end, to create a fantastic atmosphere around us. It'll be very important for us."

Spurs also confirmed that defender Japhet Tanganga will miss the remainder of the campaign following knee surgery while Conte said Oliver Skipp is set to return to action after the international break.

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