Antonio Conte has insisted that Tottenham reach a “next level”, so hat-trick hero Son Heung-min and Harry Kane must be ready to spend some time on the bench this season.
Son was dropped for visiting Leicester on Saturday but responded in stunning fashion by scoring a hat-trick in 31 minutes as a substitute to end his eight-game drought in style.
While Kane has started every game this season, Conte has admitted in recent weeks that his star striker will also need to be replaced due to the busy schedule, which will see Spurs play 12 games in seven weeks from October 1.
The Italian won major titles during his time at Juventus, Chelsea and Inter Milan and warned that after Leicester’s 6-2 thrashing there will be no compromise in the way he works.
“My story is very clear. In every situation I work in, at the end I lift a trophy,” Conte explained. “Maybe that means my vision, my work, my idea of football has to be given credit.
“I think the club is really happy with what we are doing with the players, with the staff and of course I don’t want to compromise. I don’t accept compromises for anyone. That has to be very clear.
“I want to get this team to think at a higher level, not to stay in the middle. Not staying at Tottenham because “there I play every game, every game, every game”. If you think like that, you’re probably not going to fight for something important in my opinion.
“We have just started this path with the club. Having Richarlison in front, with Harry, Sonny, Deki (Dejan Kulusevski) and also Lucas (Moura), then there is Bryan Gil who is a good prospect and young, it means that the situation gives me the possibility of having a rotation .
“In the first four games Richy was on the bench, then three games with Deki on the bench, today Sonny was on the bench. When we start playing after the international break 12 games in a row for sure that I will rotate.
“The only thing I ask of my players is to give me the possibility and not to lower the level when we do this rotation. We always want a strong team because we want to fight for every competition.
Spurs are level on points with Manchester City after seven Premier League games and remain unbeaten in the division.
A grueling fixture list after the international break will test the depth of the Tottenham squad and they were without Ben Davies on Saturday after suffering a knee injury which will rule him out of Wales’ commitments this week next.
Conte no longer hopes to get injured, adding: “We are at 17 points after seven games. I think it was a very good start.
“Now there is the international break. I’m crossing my fingers, I hope there won’t be any more injuries because in October we have 12 games in a row. Difficult matches because we are talking about Premier League, Champions League, Premier League, Champions League.
Visiting Leicester suffered a sixth straight league defeat to put even more pressure on Brendan Rodgers.
James Maddison offered his support to his coach after the game and the Foxes boss will be hoping this break gives them the chance to reset.
Rodgers said: “Listen, players, I love them all. Since I’ve been here, they’ve given me everything.
“It was a very difficult summer and it was probably only last week that I feel like we got that rhythm back into our game, I think you saw it, but we were punished.
“Obviously I know the scoreline is not good, but from the manager’s point of view I saw a lot of good moments. We can take that forward in the next game against Nottingham Forest and have a reset now.
“This Forest game is a great home opportunity to get that first win and from there we have a really good run of games where we can pick up more points.”