LONDON – Tottenham Hotspur manager Antonio Conte said on Wednesday he was “already feeling better”, after undergoing surgery to remove his gall bladder.
The Italian, 53, faces a spell away from the dugout after a medical assessment decided an operation was needed to ease severe abdominal pain. Spurs did not indicate when he may be back but said he would return “following a period of recuperation”.
“Following a diagnosis of cholecystitis, he will be undergoing surgery to remove his gallbladder today and will return following a period of recuperation,” said a Tottenham statement issued on Wednesday.
After the operation, Conte – set to miss several matches while he recovers – posted on Instagram: “Thank you for your lovely messages, my surgery has gone well and I’m already feeling better. Now’s time to recover, I can’t wait to get back on the field with the team.”
Britain’s National Health Service noted it may take two to eight weeks to resume full activities following gall bladder surgery, depending on the nature of the operation.
Conte’s assistant, Cristian Stellini, is set to stand in for Sunday’s match at home to Manchester City.
Former Juventus, Chelsea and Inter Milan boss Conte took over at Spurs in November 2021, leading his team to Champions League qualification in his first season in charge.
His team’s form this season has been patchier, as Spurs sit fifth in the table on 36 points. They are 14 points adrift of English Premier League leaders and fierce local rivals Arsenal, who have played two games fewer.
Conte has also endured a difficult time off the pitch, having lost three close counterparts in football.
Last October, he was faced with the death of Spurs’ fitness coach and long-time friend Gian Piero Ventrone from cancer. Former teammates and friends Sinisa Mihajlovic and Gianluca Vialli also passed away from cancer in December and January respectively.
Conte said in January: “To lose in such a short time three people that I knew very well – before Gian Piero Ventrone, then Sinisa and now Gianluca. It was not simple.
“For sure, when this situation happens, it brings you to have important reflections. Because many times we think and we give a lot of importance to our work and we forget the family, we forget that we need to have more time for us.
“This season is a difficult season for me as a personal aspect. For sure, this season is making me to have an important reflection on my future.” AFP