Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte said his players will have to accept squad rotation this season and even the likes of Son Heung-min, who finished the last campaign as the Premier League’s joint-top scorer, will not play every game.
Son scored 23 league goals last season but has yet to find the net in the current campaign, and with Harry Kane, Richarlison and Dejan Kulusevski competing for places Conte said attacking players would spend time on the sidelines.
Conte had previously said he would be “crazy” to drop Son but when asked on Monday if the South Korean could be subject to rotation he said: “I think when you try to build something important ... you have to change old habits.
“Otherwise it means you want to stay in balance and it means you don’t want to have ambition. For this reason all the players have to accept the rotation, especially up front, we have four players.
“The old habit was that the players were used to playing in every game,” added Conte ahead of Tuesday’s Champions League game at Sporting Lisbon.
“What happened in this type of situation is that you don’t have great possibilities to win. You try to make the players happy, but big clubs have a big squad, a deep squad.”
The Premier League postponed last weekend’s fixtures as a mark of respect following the death of Queen Elizabeth and while Conte said it had given his team the chance to rest there could be issues in rescheduling matches due to the World Cup.
“For sure the game that the Premier League decided to postpone helped us a bit to recover... The schedule, to find time and space to recover these type of games would be very, very difficult,” he added.