tottenham manager Antonio Conte “very close” to a full return to work but not ready to participate in Sunday’s game against his former club Chelsea.

Conte remains Italy He is recovering from gallbladder surgery after doctors told him to rest again last week, accelerating his return to first-team duties amid his defeats at the Spurs. Leicester and AC Milan.

Assistant Cristian Stellini led the team in last weekend’s win. West Ham and is in regular contact with Conte, who monitors training and calls his long-serving coach several times a day.

While Conte’s workaholic nature may have pushed him to act sooner than planned, he is not expected to attend Sunday’s visit to a club where he has won two trophies.

“We don’t know yet, but I think it’s very close to coming back,” Stellini said.

No, I don’t think so (for Chelsea). Not right now but he’s very close because I feel his energy too. We call three times a day, also in the evening, so I definitely feel like Antonio is here.

“We talk a lot, and if we compare today to when Antonio had surgery three weeks ago, the situation is completely different. He’s totally involved. We convey this feeling to him that we feel in the actors.

I can’t wait to get him back and I think Antonio’s impact will be incredible when he returns.

Cristian Stellini

It can also monitor the workout so the energy comes back 100 percent.

I can’t wait to get him back and I think Antonio’s impact will be incredible when he returns.”

The Spurs lost all four games against Chelsea last season; this includes three matches last January where the Blues won 3-0 in a two-legged match. Carabao Cup semifinal.

Still, 12 months later, Tottenham may be 14 points ahead of their London rivals this weekend with a win, but Stellini wants to downplay the talk of where they might be this time next year.

“We have the same points as last season and we finished fourth. We can do that this season, but we also need the confidence to do it,” he said.

“Title contender is not a definition we like because to be a title contender you have to show up on the show to be a title contender.

“We need facts to be a title contender. Anyone can talk about it but you have to show it and stay there.

“We are happy because if we compare our team to last January, we are better now, but we have to keep working and improving. We fought hard against Chelsea last season and we hope this season can change.”

Stellini continues to impress in Conte’s absence and won three games at the head of Tottenham after scoring the same number of wins as he replaced his boss at Inter Milan.

Alessandria’s former manager added: “I really enjoy being a responsible manager, but when you make a decision you have to do your best.

“Sometimes I think of being a coach as a dream. But I’m an assistant and that’s the truth.

“I enjoy being an assistant. I feel like I’m good enough to continue in this job.”