Spurs star Ryan Sessegnon reveals he spent summer in Portugal with a conditioning coach to keep up with Antonio Conte’s intense Tottenham regime… and claims the Italian’s training is ‘physically hard’ compared to other coaches
- Ryan Sessegnon spent the summer with a conditioning coach in Portugal
- The full-back wanted to shape himself to fit into Antonio Conte’s Spurs system
- He’s enjoyed a resurgence at left wing-back in Conte’s Tottenham side
- Sessegnon says his former coaches were ‘more chilled’ than the Italian boss
Ryan Sessegnon’s summer spent in Portugal with a dedicated conditioning coach was to keep up with Antonio Conte’s intense regime at Tottenham.
The England Under-21 international – set to feature against Italy in today’s friendly – has been plagued by hamstring injuries since joining Spurs three years ago.
But he has enjoyed a resurgence under the Italian and puts that down to a fortnight in the Algarve with Matchroom Boxing’s Dan Lawrence, time devoted to strengthening his core and shaping himself to fit in Conte’s energy-driven system.
Ryan Sessegnon says he spent the summer with a conditioning coach ahead of the new season
The England full-back says he did so in order to fit in with Antonio Conte’s Spurs system
‘It was to make my body more robust,’ he said. ‘My body can handle it a bit more when I’m fatigued now. That was mainly the reason I went away, to build that core strength around the body.’ Asked if he would have booked the trip were it not for Conte, Sessegnon added: ‘Yes and no. Yes because from an injury point of view, I needed to do it.
‘But in terms of the fitness, that was more because of Conte. People can see that I’ve put on a little bit of muscle. I was trying to improve that explosiveness as well.
‘The other managers I’ve had at Spurs have been a bit more chilled with training. With this gaffer, even if we’re doing tactical stuff, it’s still physically hard.
The wing-back has enjoyed a resurgence during the Italian coach’s tenure at Tottenham
‘The longer runs, the hard distances – eight or nine kilometre runs in training three days before games. It’s hard but your body adapts. Then when you’re on the pitch it benefits you. I feel the whole team is stronger.’
Sessegnon was injured when Conte was appointed last November, and those on the treatment table are still made to watch tactical sessions with the squad.
He described them as ‘long days’ but believes they offered a valuable insight into what was required to succeed under Jose Mourinho’s successor. That is made clear by the manager’s fitness coach, Gian Piero Ventrone, who is renowned for his brutal drills.
Sessegnon says that Conte’s training is ‘physically harder’ than what he’s experienced before
‘As a team, I don’t think we were really fit and he made us run a lot,’ Sessegnon said. ‘I knew when I came back that I had to be ready for the levels.
‘He (Ventrone) is good. Obviously he’s very good. But he’s a killer – seriously. Very intense. With the more physical players, where he knows he can push you, he will be on you.
‘It’s probably the first time in my Spurs career that I know what to do with and without the ball in a situation where the formation is clear.’
The training seemed to pay off as Sessegnon scored Spurs’ first goal of the league campaign
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