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Conte hints Inter future uncertain after Europa League loss

Antonio Conte hinted Friday that his future at Inter Milan remains uncertain after losing to Sevilla in the final of the Europa League.

Conte said he needed time to reflect after the 3-2 loss in the final left his Inter team the runner-up for the second time this season after finishing a point behind Juventus in Serie A.

“It’s only right that I start to reflect and to think about things. I also have a private life and I need to understand what’s going on,” he said through a translator. Taking the Inter job was worth it, “regardless of what will ultimately come to pass in the coming days,” he said.

Inter Milan's head coach Antonio Conte walks past the trophy at the end of the Europa League final soccer match between Sevilla and Inter Milan in Cologne, Germany, Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. Sevilla won 3-2. (Lars Baron, Pool Photo via AP)

Conte added: “I’ve had an incredible experience at this club, regardless of what will go on in the future. But I have no regrets whatsoever.”

After the last Serie A game of the season against Atalanta on Aug. 1, Conte said the club could have done more to protect the team from criticism and “attacks.” On Friday he pushed back at suggestions there could be a rift with club president Steven Zhang and Inter's Chinese owners, saying his relationship with them remained “strong.”

Zhang praised Conte and his team for doing a “great job” in comments to broadcaster Sky Sport which Inter also published on its club website. “We’ll rest for a few days and plan for the future,” he added.

Inter Milan's head coach Antonio Conte stands on the field at the end of the Europa League final soccer match between Sevilla and Inter Milan in Cologne, Germany, Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. Sevilla won 3:2. (Friedemann VogelPool via AP)

Second place in Serie A was the best result for Inter since 2011 and the Europa League final was its first chance to play for a continental trophy since Jose Mourinho coached the team to the 2010 Champions League title, completing a treble that season.

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Inter Milan's head coach Antonio Conte and players react after the Europa League final soccer match between Sevilla and Inter Milan in Cologne, Germany, Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. (Ina FassbenderPool via AP)

Inter Milan's head coach Antonio Conte, second right, reacts after the Europa League final soccer match between Sevilla and Inter Milan at the Rhein Energie Stadium in Cologne, Germany, Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. Sevilla won 3-2. (AP PhotoMartin Meissner, Pool)