By Noel Whelan

5th Oct, 2022 | 7:00am

Pundit can't believe what he's seen from Antonio Conte at Tottenham

Noel Whelan has claimed it was a “head-scratcher” to see Tottenham boss Antonio Conte hook Heung-min Son and Richarlison despite trailing 3-1 in their derby clash with Arsenal.

The former Leeds striker was speaking exclusively to Football Insider after the Italian hit back at critics of his team selection.

Conte chose to use four of his five available substitutions quickly after Tottenham conceded the third goal in their 3-1 defeat against Arsenal on Saturday (1 October).

Tottenham strikers Son and Richarlison were replaced by defensive reinforcements as they shut up shop following Emerson Royal’s sending-off.

As quoted by the London Evening Standard (4 October), Conte hit back at suggestions that his tactics were negative – insisting he is “not stupid”.

He also implored fans to “trust him” after question marks over the omission of summer signing Djed Spence.

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Whelan claimed the substitutions were “strange” and insisted Conte “lessened” Tottenham’s attacking potency.

He told Football Insider’s Ewan Kingsbury: “I’d like to have seen Son and Richarlison stay on and try and get a goal.

“When you’re losing a game and you take off two big strikers, you lessen your side.

“I thought it was strange. Usually you throw on more attackers, so it was a bit of a head-scratcher.

“They were never on the front foot in the game, whereas Arsenal were very potent and very easy on the eye.”

Tottenham fell four points behind table-topping rivals Arsenal after Saturday’s loss.

Spurs are next in Premier League action against Brighton this weekend (8 October).

In other news, expert claims “something’s not right” at Tottenham after Djed Spence dig.