has distanced himself from Tottenham’s £20m move for Djed Spence, saying the transfer was the club’s decision rather than his own.
Spence, who impressed on loan at Nottingham Forest from Middlesbrough in the Championship last season, became Spurs’ sixth summer signing on Tuesday.
The 21-year-old has penned a five-year deal at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium following the arrivals of Richarlison, , Ivan Perisic, Fraser Forster and Clement Lenglet.
However, Spurs boss Conte has revealed that it was not his call to sign right-back Spence, who has three caps for the England U21s.
‘Spence is an investment of the club,’ Conte said. ‘The club wanted to do it.
‘I said ‘OK, this player is young but he showed he can become a good, important player for us’ [and] the club decided to buy him.’
Spence helped Forest secure promotion to the Premier League last season and his attitude has previously been called into question by his former boss Neil Warnock.
Spence worked under Warnock at Middlesbrough and the 73-year-old raised concerns over the player’s mentality.
‘There are not many players where you can say it’s all up to them personally how far they go – it’s what’s between the ears,’ Warnock said.
‘He could be playing at a top club in England or in non-league in five years, I don’t know.
‘Application, dedication, all these things come into it. He’s got the tools, there’s no doubt about that.’
Spence responded to Warnock after Forest’s promotion, posting a picture of himself with a cigar in his mouth and a play-off winners’ medal around his neck with the caption: ‘Oh, Where’s my Manners! Welcome to Twitter @warnockofficial’
Warnock responded: ‘Well done Djed, I did say you were Premier League or non-league, glad you listened and took my advice on board now go and enjoy your success.
‘Those cigars won’t do you any good though son.’
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