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Antonio Gone-te: Tottenham Hotspur sack Italian manager

It’s no longer a rumor. It’s done.

Tottenham Hotspur v Aston Villa - Premier League Photo by Tottenham Hotspur FC/Tottenham Hotspur FC via Getty Images

Tragedy: A play dealing with tragic events and having an unhappy ending, especially one concerning the downfall of the main character.

Tottenham Hotspur announced that they have parted ways with manager Antonio Conte, effective immediately. The news was broken via an official communication from the club’s social media accounts.

We can announce that Head Coach Antonio Conte has left the Club by mutual agreement. We achieved Champions League qualification in Antonio’s first season at the Club. We thank Antonio for his contribution and wish him well for the future.

Sadly, this seemed to be the obvious ending months ago. Antonio Conte’s personal tragedies mounted throughout the season, including the loss of a few close friends and a medical procedure that sidelined him a few weeks. It’s understandable that the Italian boss had problems focusing with everything going on, and nobody would have blamed him one bit if he came back from that surgery and said he just needed to step away. I also believe that the club would have fully supported that and let Christian Stellini or Ryan Mason take the reins for the remainder of the season.

However, that’s not what happened.

Instead, Conte returned from surgery not like a conquering hero, but more like Macbeth and proceeded to set everything on fire. He voiced frustrations, tried to insulate himself from blame, and ultimately made comments disparaging everyone involved with the club. Reports came out Monday morning that he tried to walk things back with the board and, for a moment, it seemed like Daniel Levy and the board were going to let it slide. Once word that the dressing room was now a toxic environment leaked out, it seemed the jig was up and everything accelerated.

Conte’s remaining contract will be bought out at roughly £4m. Perhaps the unexpected twist to this is that everyone expected Ryan Mason to be the caretaker, but instead Cristian Stellini will take over. Mason will be the top assistant.

Tragedy takes on many forms, and Tottenham Hotspur supporters know this. The very existence of the club feels like a tragedy in every sense, and now this particular chapter has its downfall.

To quote Mel Brooks: “Tragedy is when I cut my finger. Comedy is when you fall into an open sewer and die.” Except there is no death for us. We climb out of that sewer and move onto the next chapter of the tragedy.