By Alex McLeish

5th Nov, 2021 | 3:00pm

Ex-manager 'shocked' as Tottenham trio fail Conte audition

Alex McLeish has slammed the Tottenham centre-backs after Thursday’s 3-2 win over Vitesse Arnhem.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former Scotland manager questioned if Eric Dier, Cristian Romero and Ben Davies are up to the standard required for Antonio Conte.

Spurs raced into a 3-0 lead against Vitesse before conceding twice in the final 15 minutes of the first half.

Despite Romero and two of the away side’s players being sent off in the second half, the score remained 3-2.

Conte switched to playing a versatile 3-4-3 formation after Football Insider revealed the Italian had worked on implementing a three-man defence in training.

However, despite the win, McLeish insisted the defending was not up to scratch.

Subscribe to Football Insider TV now

He suggested Conte would have to continue working hard with his centre-backs on the training ground.

Discussing Vitesse’s two goals, McLeish told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “That’s kind of shocked me.

“You see it. There’s definitely something not right in that Spurs defence.

“They’ve tinkered with it so many times with the players that are in there, you just get the feeling that they’re not the top drawer.

“That result on Thursday night emphasises that.

“It all comes down to the three and you’ve got to drill them on the positioning or if you’re down on numbers.

“That’s going to be a big part of his teaching. He’ll make his defence as tight as he tries to be more creative for the guys up front.”

Tottenham travel to Everton on Sunday for their last game before the international break.

In other news, Tottenham tipped to sign star centre-back and playmaker as Conte’s number one target revealed.