Antonio Conte has played down reports of an outbreak in Tottenham and insists Harry Kane will be fit to face Norwich in the crucial Premier League match on Sunday.
A win at Carrow Road would secure Tottenham’s Champions League match for next season, but there were concerns with rumors circulating on social media that the disease was spreading in the camp.
Kane’s fitness was called into question when he pulled out of media appearances on Friday afternoon as a precaution due to feeling unwell.
Speculation began emerging about what role he might play at Carrow Road, but Conte dismissed those doubts, and confirmed that Tottenham’s spell would be suitable to face Norwich.
And when asked if Kane would be fit to lead Tottenham in the Champions League, Conte said: “Yes for sure, and because in the last game we had Dickie Kulusevsky and he did not train on Saturday but he was good at playing.
“Harry doesn’t want to miss this kind of game. It means a lot to everyone at the club.”
The virus is our last problem.
On rumors of illness at the Tottenham camp, he added: “If you remember the last match, we had three or four cases of stomach problems.
“This week I have to be honest we had a few cases but we overcame the situation. Also, one day the cast members weren’t feeling well. I don’t know why, last week but also this week we had this situation.
“At the moment, this virus is our last problem. We are close to a big achievement and we are fully focused. The situation for the players is the same as the last match.”
I don’t want to know about the lasagna gate
Reports of food poisoning afflicting Spurs were remarkably similar to 2006’s ‘gate lasagna’, as Arsenal continued to secure Champions League football ahead of Spurs on the final day of the season.
Tottenham went into the final day of the season one point ahead of Arsenal, but a bout of food poisoning afflicted 10 team members, engulfed the team and lost to West Ham, while Arsenal won their final. A match in Highbury against Wigan to secure the UEFA Champions League.
Asked what came to be known as the “Lasagna Gate,” Conte said: “I don’t want to know that story.
“I’m not interested in getting into this story,” he laughed.
“I think we are in a good moment. We have worked well this week and have prepared very well. We have to be focused.
“There is a whole season behind this match and we can achieve something amazing for us because I think no one can imagine the top four this season. We worked hard and now everything is in our hands.”
We can come up with something amazing
Spurs were the same 16 years later – they won their last game of the season and would overtake Arsenal to fourth and book a return to the Champions League.
Conte says it would be a “fantastic” achievement for Tottenham to qualify given the state of the club when he joined in November.
He added: “The whole season is behind this match, and we can achieve something amazing for us because I think no one can imagine Tottenham in the top four this season.”
“This should be a huge boost for us because we work hard and deserve to stay in this position. Now it’s all in our hands, not in the hands of others. That’s why we want to have it.”
“Being fourth in the top four means a lot to everyone because the top players, coaches and top clubs want to play this competition and not the others.
“Having this opportunity is vital for us for many reasons. The club receives money to participate in this competition which is very important. We have to try to do our best and if we remember the way we started in November for sure. It is a huge achievement for the improvement that this has done the team.
“At the same time it is important not to forget our path, it was a difficult path. It is important for the club to understand what we did together but not without problems.”