Spurs boss Conte ponders football future after death of three friends

Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte said Wednesday the death of three close friends in a matter of months had left him questioning his future in football.

Gian Piero Ventrone, the club's fitness coach, died in October before December witnessed the passing of Conte's friend and former Lazio defender Sinisa Mihajlovic.

And earlier this month came the death of Conte's former Juventus and Italy team-mate Gianluca Vialli.

The 53-year-old Conte is the same age as Mihajlovic was at his time of death, while Vialli was just five years older than the much-travelled Italian manager.

Conte, asked about his feelings ahead of Tottenham's match away to Premier League champions Manchester City on Thursday, replied: "For sure, this season is a difficult season from a personal aspect.

"Because to lose in such a short time three people that I knew very well -- before Gian Piero Ventrone, then Sinisa and now Gianluca. It was not simple."

He added: "For sure, when this situation happens, it brings you to have important reflections. Because many times we think and we give a lot of importance to our work and we forget the family, we forget that we need to have more time for us.

"This season is a difficult season for me as a personal aspect. For sure, this season is making me to have an important reflection on my future."

Conte's contract at Spurs expires at the end of the current season.

And with the north London side fifth and still in the hunt for a Champions League place, Conte insisted he would focus on the task at hand despite any uncertainty over his long-term future.

"You can tell me I could be not a good coach, but about the commitment and what I give the club where I work, no club was unhappy about this," he said.

"Usually when I left the club they regret me leaving a lot because they knew the way that I work and the commitment I put into the club, what I give for the club.

"Yes. I think this. But in this aspect I am really happy for the way that I am."

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