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Antonio’s praise for ‘reliable’ Ben Davies

Thu 07 April 2022, 22:00|Tottenham Hotspur

Antonio Conte has hailed the efforts of Ben Davies after he proved influential at both ends of the pitch last weekend.

The Welsh international has settled into his role as a left-sided centre-back for us, starting in the position in all but one of our Premier League games under the Italian boss.

He equalised last Sunday against Newcastle, glancing in Heung-Min Son’s cross to ensure we went into the half-time break level and paving the way for us to push on to register an emphatic 5-1 victory.

Ahead of Saturday’s trip to Aston Villa, Antonio spoke glowingly about the long-serving defender.

“Ben is playing a fantastic season, in my opinion,” he told Spurs TV on Thursday. “He’s a reliable player, he scored an important goal for us and I think he deserved to score this goal. Ben is playing in an important way with us, as a central defender and he’s showing that he’s a really good player.”

Ben is playing in an important way with us, as a central defender and he’s showing that he’s a really good player.

Antonio Conte

Ben was, of course, not the only defender to get on the scoresheet last week, with Matt Doherty and Emerson Royal also finding the back of the net – indeed, it was the first time three defenders had scored for us in the Premier League era. With the news that Sergio Reguilon and Ryan Sessegnon are back in training after recovering from injury, the Head Coach went on to reiterate the importance of having options at his disposal in different areas of the pitch as we approach the business end of the season.

“For us, it’s very important to have two good options on the bench,” he explained, in reference to the wing-back positions. “For sure, Sergio has recovered now from his injury and it’s the same for Ryan Sessegnon – two important players for us. I think in the last game, Matthew (Doherty) and Emerson played a good game, and it’s good because we have the possibility on the bench of the two to change the game and also to have fresh players, to give energy.

“Especially in this last part of the season, where we have eight games to play, it’s very important to have the possibility to make rotation, but at the same time when you decide the starting XI, to have on the bench the possibility of important players to come in and give you the chance to change the game or to improve the game. It was shown in the last game with Harry Winks, with Steven Bergwijn, with Lucas Moura, and I am very happy to see my players come in and play this way.”