Antonio Conte defends rival Arsene Wenger insisting top four finish in the Premier League is a 'good target'

The Frenchman has been under mounting pressure because of a particularly bad run, raising the possibility that Arsenal could miss out on Champions League qualification for the first time in his reign

Miguel Delaney
Chief Football Writer
Friday 10 March 2017 16:46 GMT
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Arsene Wenger and Antonio Conte
Arsene Wenger and Antonio Conte

Antonio Conte has defended Arsenal counterpart Arsene Wenger from recent criticism and said top four is a “good target” because of how competitive the Premier League is becoming.

The French manager has been under mounting pressure because of a particularly bad spell of form, raising the possibility that Arsenal could miss out on Champions League qualification for the first time in his reign, and that he could finally leave at the end of the season.

Conte, however, offered a strong defence and said the challenge to finish top four could become even more difficult next season.

“It's not an easy moment for Wenger, but we are talking about a great manager. I think that, in 20 years at Arsenal, he did very well. He worked a lot. Every year Arsenal stay in the Champions League.

"Now, I think, this could also be a good target because, in England, it's not easy. You have to fight, this season, with six teams.

"Next season, seven or eight teams to find the right place. He won in the past with Arsenal. I don't know if it's too much or not, to win, but I think he deserves respect for his past, for his work.”

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