Conte: 'In-form Chelsea have regained hunger'

Chelsea did not have the right "desire" in its last Champions League loss in Rome, according to Antonio Conte.

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte is confident the Premier League champion has turned the corner after an indifferent start to the campaign.   -  Getty Images

Antonio Conte believes Chelsea has rediscovered the motivation that was missing from last month's concerning Champions League defeat to Roma.

The Blues were emphatically brushed aside 3-0 at Stadio Olimpico but can still advance from Group C with three points at Qarabag on Wednesday.

The team looks to be in far better shape for its latest European engagement following impressive Premier League victories over Manchester United and West Brom.

Read: Conte blasts Chelsea after Roma rout

And Conte is confident the Premier League champion has turned the corner after an indifferent start to the campaign.

"These players and this team have always shown great desire, great will to fight in every game," Conte told reporters.

"Against Roma, together we did not show this. Me first. I always put myself before the players, to take responsibility.

"For me, we did not deserve to finish the first half 2-0 down, but the second half was negative because we did not show the desire to change the result, to try to draw, to try to win. But I think in every season there are games [like that].


"We had a lot of problems [at the start of the season] and we are also trying to change something in the tactical aspect, to find different solutions.

"When you concede so many goals it means you have to find a new balance and solidity. I hope to continue to improve."

Conte maintained his stance that the decision to drop David Luiz is purely "tactical" and is partly due to Andreas Christensen's form.

"Every game I have to try to make the best decision for the team, and if I am taking this decision it means Christensen is deserving to play," he said.

"I think Christensen is playing very well but we have to play a lot of games and we have to play every three days.

"We need all the players and to have different solutions [is good]. Last season [at centre-back] I did not have this opportunity."

Support Sportstar

Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos