‘Lay off the wine!’: Antonio Conte tears into his Inter Milan critics after they questioned why his usual touchline energy has been lacking this season – as he admits his misfiring team lack a ‘killer touch’
- Inter boss Antonio Conte has hit back at his critics after a 1-1 draw with Atalanta
- The ex-Chelsea boss has been accused of being less animated on the sidelines
- Conte told critics to ‘lay off the wine’ and admitted the team lack ‘killer instinct’
- He is facing pressure after a spell of poor form with Inter slipping down the table
Inter Milan boss Antonio Conte fired hit back at critics for suggestion he is less animated on the touchline this season – telling them to ‘lay off the wine’.
The Nerazzurri have struggled for consistent results this season and have slipped away from the title conversation in Serie A, with his team in 7th place after 12 points from seven games, with bitter rivals AC Milan leading the table.
Inter drew 1-1 with Atalanta on Sunday, their fifth game without victory, with the Italian giants also struggling in Europe after a 3-2 loss to Real Madrid and a 0-0 stalemate against Shakhtar Donetsk.
Inter Milan boss has laid into his critics for claiming he is not as animated as usual this season
His side drew 1-1 with Atalanta to stretch their winless run to five games amid poor form
Pressure has been mounting on the team and Conte, with some media outlets claiming he is lacking the fiery energy on the touchline he has been known for.
But when asked for his response to those claims, Conte hit back: ‘I’d advise them to lay off the wine.’
Premier League fans will remember Conte for his passionate displays in his technical area, furious outbursts and huge celebrations during his time with Chelsea, and it was that desire that helped him with the title in his first season at Stamford Bridge in 2016-17.
Conte was renowned for his passionate touchline antics during his time with Chelsea
He admitted his players are lacking a ‘killer instinct’ to finish off games after yet another draw
His energy once got Conte into a feud with Jose Mourinho after his Chelsea side thrashed Manchester United 4-0 in 2016, with the Italian wildly celebrating every goal – prompting the Portuguese boss to accuse him of disrespect.
Inter’s winless run continued against Atalanta as Lautaro Martinez’s strike was cancelled out by Aleksey Miranchuk with ten minutes to go, making the visitors pay for a handful of missed chances from Arturo Vidal and Nicolo Barella.
And Conte admitted his players are lacking a ‘killer instinct’ to win games after their third draw in four games, but added that the expectation on the team to win every match shows how far they have come.
Conte has come under pressure at Inter Milan with just one win coming since September
‘Atalanta found it difficult to play against us,’ he told Sky Sports Italia, via Stadium Astro. ‘We had chances to kill off the game but we are maybe missing that killer instinct to take home the results we deserve.
‘The fact people expect so much from Inter means that in the space of a year teams have learned to fear us. In the past we would have come here and not been feared at all.’
Conte’s tenure at Inter has been a rollercoaster journey so far, looking to be favourites for the title last season after topping the table for many months, only to finish third behind Atalanta.
Inter also reached the Europa League final under his leadership but were agonisingly beaten 3-2 by Sevilla – and claimed he could walk away after the crushing loss before opting to lead the team for another season.