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Conte Optimistic Spurs Can Upset Milan In England

Antonio Conte insisted Tottenham could turn around their first-leg deficit after a 1-0 loss at Milan in the Champions League.Brahim Diaz made an early breakthough, scoring in the seventh minute at San Siro when he nodded in from close range after Fraser Forster made saves from the Spaniard and Theo Hernandez.Milan could have stretched their lead in the second half but spurned chances, giving Tottenham reasonable grounds for optimism ahead of the March 8 second leg in London.Former Inter boss Conte wants the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium to radiate the same type of atmosphere Spurs experienced at San Siro, believing that could help Spurs through to the quarter-finals.He told BT Sport: “You have to play two games. It was a fantastic atmosphere. I know San Siro, and I know the difficulty to play in this atmosphere.”For sure in the second game we have to play in our stadium and for sure all the fans will create the right atmosphere to push us to overcome the Milan obstacle.”His injury-hit team were crushed 4-1 at Leicester City in the Premier League on Saturday, and Conte was without Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg due to suspension for Tuesday’s last-16 first leg in Italy.

Pape Sarr and Oliver Skipp paired up in central midfield, with Yves Bissouma and Rodrigo Bentancur sidelined due to long-term injuries, and Conte liked what he saw, to a point.”I think it was better today – high intensity, and I think we played against a good team. Don’t forget Milan last season won the league in Italy,” Conte said.”I think that to concede the first goal, we can do much better. We conceded a goal after maybe only five minutes.”Then we tried to lead the game, we tried to create situations to score, but I think Milan defended very well. We had chances to score, but at the end we are talking about a defeat, a loss.”He said of Sarr and Skipp: “I’m really satisfied for both players. They played a really good game and showed the trust that we have in them, they repaid this.”Don’t forget we now have three midfielders and we have to continue maybe to the end of the season with these three midfielders, and to have this type of performance from Skippy and Pape Sarr makes me more relaxed because I know I can count on them 100 per cent.”And then we have Pierre Hojbjerg who for us is a key player.”Skipp said of his first start in the competition: “It wasn’t the result we wanted, but there’s a second leg to come and we’re still right in the game.”There were things we could have done better, things we did well. It was nice to gain the manager’s trust.”

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