As the clock hit minute 76 at Carrow Road on the final day of the Premier League season, all appeared to be right in the world of Tottenham Hotspur.
Spurs were celebrating a fifth goal against Norwich while Son Heung-min had just scored his 23rd of the season – of which none were penalties – to see him earn his first Premier League Golden Boot, an honour he would share with Liverpool's Mohamed Salah.
In the grand scheme of things, Spurs were minutes away from securing Champions League football for next season – an incredible feat achieved by Antonio Conte given what he walked in to when Nuno Espirito Santo was sacked back in November.
Tottenham secured Champions League football on the final day of the 2021-22 season
It is an incredible achievement for Antonio Conte, after inheriting Nuno's poor Spurs side
During Nuno's short and woeful reign at Spurs, the team had no identity.
Before his sacking, Spurs had been beaten heavily by each of their London rivals and were struggling to muster even a shot on goal, while a despondent Harry Kane led the line after an attempt to force through a move to Manchester City fell apart.
It all looked very bleak in that area of north London.
But just over six months later, Spurs are back in the big time after a two-year absence, preparing to rub shoulders with Europe's elite once again, having taken the third-most points in the league since Conte was appointed.
The players and manager celebrated together on the Carrow Road pitch after the full-time whistle, with Conte gesturing that his players should get the adulation, but just like the rest of the season, the Tottenham fans just sang and sang the Italian's name.
Conte has become a fan favourite in such a short space of time and the desire for Spurs to go forward under him is universally wanted by Tottenham supporters.
But as the dust settled on the 2021-22 campaign, the niggling anxiety that Conte may not even be at Tottenham next season lingered as he refused to commit to the job, given that he wants assurances that he will be backed this summer and his title-winning ambitions matched going forward.
While Conte insisted that securing Champions League football at Tottenham was one of his 'biggest achievements' as a manager, he insisted that it will all be in vain if there are a lack of reinforcements by the time the new season comes around.
Conte has got Spurs firing and they took the third most league points since November
He said: 'But it is very important to not forget the path that we had to try to improve the situation because we need to improve the situation, next season for sure, there are five substitutions (per match), another competition and Tottenham must understand this, that it will be very difficult, maybe much more than this season.
'Today is not the right time to speak about this topic. Today is really important to celebrate this big achievement but for sure to become competitive and be ready to fight for something important you need to improve, improve a lot in many aspects and I know only one word, that is work, work, work.
'Everybody has to do the right path in this process. We need to improve a lot. Next season the league will be very difficult for all the teams.
'With five subs you can change a game. If the bench is strong like a top team, like City, Chelsea, (Manchester) United and Liverpool, you need to improve a lot your squad in quality aspect and numerical aspect.
'You have to face in England three national competitions and one in the Champions League.'
And it's not just the fans who are desperate for Conte to be backed and will stick around – Tottenham's players want it too.
Hugo Lloris, Harry Kane, and Eric Dier have all revealed their desire for the club to spend, as they look to make good on finally returning to the Champions League.
Spurs chairman Daniel Levy must now back Conte if Spurs are to push for titles next season
Eric Dier (right) has also revealed his and other senior players' desire for Conte to be backed
The players want Conte to build a team that can compete on four fronts and challenge for silverware next season.
'I think the club needs to take advantage of this moment, take advantage of this team and this manager. It's in the club's hands now,' Dier said.
'We've done our job and now it's the club's job this summer to do the best work they can.
'I'm sure they'll try to do their best to put us in a position next season for us and the manager to continue to push on and get better and better.'
Captain Lloris hopes returning to the Champions League after a two-year absence will give the board the confidence to back Conte.
'I believe [he] knows exactly what he wants and needs,' said the goalkeeper.
'I believe there is huge confidence. It's just about making decisions together now. I'm a player, we're going to switch off from the club [for the summer].
'We still have international duties, but now it belongs to the main protagonists to make the right decisions, to prepare for next season as well as we can. Then we'll come back with desire and ambition.'
Captain Hugo Lloris hopes returning to the Champions League after a two-year absence will give the board the confidence to back Conte
It left Spurs at a crossroads.
It is no secret that Conte will walk away from all of his hard work at the north London club if he isn't taken seriously and he has previously threatened to walk earlier this year if his ambition isn't matched.
After years of vastly improving the infrastructure of the club, including building one of the country's finest training grounds and a state-of-the-art £1billion stadium, chairman Daniel Levy must now turn his attentions back to on-pitch matters.
He finally has a world-class manager to take the club to new heights and Conte needs a team in his image to help realise the full potential of what this club can achieve.
That's not to say Levy hasn't backed previous managers – far from it. He has broken the club's transfer record several times during his tenure as chairman – most recently shelling out £65m on Tanguy Ndombele, who was sent back to Lyon on loan this season after vastly disappointing.
Spending has never really been a part of the problem for Levy, it's what he spends his money on.
However, he has since taken a step back and hired Fabio Paratici, who has overseen the transfers of Cristian Romero, Dejan Kulusevski and Rodrigo Bentancur this season.
It is no secret that Conte will walk away from Spurs if his ambition isn't matched
All three of those buys have been a massive hit but one aspect of Kulusevski and Bentancur's arrivals that frustrated supporters initially was that Levy was too indecisive when chasing targets and lacks a cutting edge in getting deals done quickly.
It saw them miss out on Luis Diaz to Liverpool and Adama Traore to Barcelona, and while only the former has proved to be a massive success story this season, the failure to get certain deals over the line may see Conte walk.
There is hope that Conte will be backed this summer, though. Just days after securing a seat at Europe's top table Spurs' owners ENIC pumped £150million into the club.
Several reports had claimed that the Tottenham hierarchy were ready to completely back Conte in the summer transfer window and were willing to shell out on six new players to keep the former Chelsea and Inter Milan manager happy.
According to The Telegraph, Conte is wanting to sign a new centre-back, right wing-back, two midfielders, a forward and a back-up goalkeeper.
Spurs are looking at an understudy for Lloris and are reportedly close to getting a free transfer for Southampton keeper Fraser Forster over the line. They've also considered a move for West Brom's Sam Johnstone.
In regards to a new centre-back, Alessandro Bastoni of Inter and RB Leipzig's Croatian starlet Josko Gvardiol have been linked but Spurs will face a bidding war with a number of European clubs if they go for either. Pau Torres has also been linked.
Alessandro Bastoni (left) and Josko Gvardiol (right) are potential targets for Tottenham
A return for Christian Eriksen is also being mooted, following his stunning stint at Brentford
Man City's Gabriel Jesus could be one of the six transfer targets Conte wants to bring in
In midfield, a return for Christian Eriksen is being mooted while James Ward-Prowse and John McGinn are also being lined up, given their Premier League experience.
City's Gabriel Jesus and free agent Paulo Dybala could help offload the burden in attack for Kane and Son, while the pair also add plenty of title and Champions League experience to the side.
Should he get his wish of signing several new faces, Conte will have quite the balancing act when it comes to staying within the homegrown boundaries but bit-part players will likely be sent on their way.
It remains to be seen if Levy will back Conte in the summer. If he doesn't then Spurs fans could be yet to experience just how Inter Milan and Chelsea supporters felt after he walked out on the club.
But if he receives the full backing and gets his way, and he has already brought in Ivan Perisic from Inter, silverware could quite realistically be on the cards for Tottenham next season.
Should Conte receive full backing, silverware could realistically be on the cards next season
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