Authors Posts by Francesca Ceciarini

Francesca Ceciarini

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Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez is far to extend his deal with Gunners and some reports during the week suggested Chelsea might have interest in signing him, but Antonio Conte think is disrespectful to speak about outher teams’ players:

“I don’t think it’s right to speak about players of the other teams,” the Italian manager said during today’s press conference.

“Now we’re totally focused on West Brom, January and next season are far. I think is disrespectful to speak about other teams’ players, it’s disrespectful for them, their teams, my teams and my players as well.”

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Asked about injury update ahead of West Bromwich game Antonio Conte revealed he’s got a new injury concern: in fact, Oscar won’t be able to be selected because of sickness, while Matic’s situation is to value before the game, like the one of David Luiz, that got a knock in his leg after Agüero‘s horrible challenge:

“Terry is recovering from his injury, Oscar is sick, the other players can be selected, tomorrow is important to see all the players with the right form and motivation to play the games.

Matic is fit, he trained with us from Tuesday, I have also tomorrow to value the situation of every single player, both physical and mental, and I will decide the line-up on Sunday.”

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte warns his team before West Brom game on Sunday, claiming the players cannot relax but, at the same time, he’s confident the Blues can have a good performance against the Birmingham side.

Asked if he can accept the fact that after the Manchester City Chelsea are the favourites to win the league, he said:

“It’s difficult to accept this because we played only 14 games, we finished the first part of the season, there is a second part, we started as underdogs. We are playing a good football and winning a lot of games, it’s important to continue like this and not to lose our hunger.

“I am sorry for what happened at Man City in the end of the game, the scuffle, it’s important to always face these situations in the the right way.

“Diego Costa is playing good football, he’s very focused on the game, this is what I ask to my players. He shows in every moment his passion and also in the changing room, I’m pleased he shows this passion in the right way.

Former Italian international Andrea Pirlo paid visit to Conte and Chelsea while on holidays in London with his family, and Antonio was asked if there was also a professional reason in his visit:

“I’m pleased for Pirlo’s visit because he was my player for three years, he played a great football in our three years together at Juventus, I’m pleased he came here with his son, we’ve got a good relationship. He just came to visit, he’s got another year of contract in the USA.

Arsenal star Alexis Sanchez is far to extend his deal with Gunners and some reports during the week suggested Chelsea might have interest in signing him, but Conte think is disrespectful to speak about outher teams’ players:

“I don’t think it’s right to speak about players of the other teams, now we’re totally focused on West Brom, January and next season are far. I think is disrespectful to speak about other teams’ players, it’s disrespectful for them, their teams, my teams and my players as well.

Asked about injuries’ concern he said:

“Terry is recovering from his injury, Oscar is sick, the other players can be selected, tomorrow is important to see all the players with the right form and motivation to play the games.

“Matic is fit, he trained with us from Tuesday, I have also tomorrow to value the situation of every single player, both physical and mental, and I will decide the line-up on Sunday.

David Luiz is going through a fantastic period of form, like all the team, and for this reason Conte praised him when asked about the sensational Brazilian’s moment:

“David Luiz always deserves respect, he’s playing good football, with a great concentration, I like this, he has to continue, then if you make mistakes. We have to think game by game.

Conte wants his team to not underestimate West Bromwich or the next rivals Chelsea will face before the end of the year:

“This league taught me that every game is very tough, you need to face every game with great concentration and preparation, tomorrow if we don’t put our usual concentration and focus we had in the previous game we cause ourselves troubles, but I guess we trained very well. I expect a great performance from my players.

“I think you build you concentration in the training sessions, because if you train well it means you are concentrated.

January transfer window is not far and the Italian manager was asked if he got intentions to operate some changes in his squad:

“As I said now it’s important to be focused on these games, we have four games before January, January is very far for me, I’m very pleased to work with this squad and these players.

“John has a great experience, I think is very important, now it’s important to be focused on playing, because he’s a footballer, I think it’s important to understand what he feels, to listen to his soul, I think he’s got skills to become a good manager.

Fabregas was rumoured to be on his way out of Chelsea, but after his impressive display at Manchester City he’s considered again a key-man for the Blues:

“Cesc Fabregas, is an important player in our squad, I want him to stay here, I don’t see nothing.

Obi Mikel, instead is not playing and is close to leave the club:

“John Obi Mikel’s situation is simple, he’s in the squad, he stays with us, at the end of this season is contract is going to expire, but I don’t know what will happen. he’s our player, he’s part of this squad. I don’t think this is the place to speak about new contracts, I prefer to speak about that with my club.

Matic is recovering from his injury while Fabregas impressed at the Etihad, so now Conte has to choose between them for the midfielder to play aside of Kante:

“I hope to have this difficult decision in every game, it means there is a lot of quality in our squad and that the situation in our squad is improving, I can choose among four midfielders for West Brom – Kante, Chalobah, Matic and Fabregas – I hope to take the right decision for the team.

Chelsea will have seven games in four weeks, four before the end of 2016, so Conte was asked if he has intention to rotate his players to give rest to some of them:

“I always repeat the same concept, every game is very tough, I’m pleased to win 8 games in a row, but this is the past, after the next four games we will finish the first part of the season, we have three games in seven days, so for this reason it’s important to have all the squad in good form. I could take the decision to do a rotation, but the most important thing is to thing game by game, now we got West Brom, then I have to see if I have some injuries, if I see some players are tired, now it’s important to go gem by game.

“If there is a good competition in the squad is very important, it’s good to create competition.”

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Sky Sports pundit Paul Merson provided his prediction of Chelsea v West Bromwich.

The Blues will try to get their ninth win in a row against the Birmingham side next Sunday at Stamford Bridge, and this is what Merson predicted:

West Brom have done brilliantly so far, but it’s a big ask at Stamford Bridge. They will keep it tight, make it difficult and wait for set-pieces.

 Who could have seen them being a point behind Manchester United in early December? What an achievement.

As for Chelsea, they have some very winnable games over Christmas and if they keep this run going, they could be hard to catch.

His predicted score is 2-0 for Chelsea.

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Chelsea sensation Victor Moses praises Antonio Conte, that let him become a key player in the team that is ruling the Premier League at the moment.

The Nigerian winger spent the last seasons on loan to several British clubs, including Liverpool, Stoke City and West Ham:

“Every manager is different,” Moses told Sport Magazine speaking about Conte.

He came in and he saw something, he knew he could work with me.

“During pre-season he came up to me and told me I was going to stay this season, that he didn’t want me to go anywhere on loan. That he believes in me.

“That gave me a boost, that gave me confidence to actually go out there and express myself more and work hard for it, to help him as well.”

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Chelsea forward Pedro confirms the team are in a perfect physical shape and even when someone picks up an unexpected injury, like Nemanja Matic shortly before Man City’s game, there is always someone ready to fight in his place, as Cesc Fabregas last weekend: the ex Barcelona midfielder was one of the best players on the pitch and provided also two fantastic assists for Blues goals:

“We feel strong because we’re all in a good vein of form at the moment,” Pedro revealed Chelsea’s official website.

“It helps when players can come in, such as Cesc, Willian or Nathaniel [Chalobah] – that’s great because we all have the same objective, we all want to win games.”

 

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Chelsea legend and now pundit Pat Nevin reveals that one of the Blues’ secret for their incredible moment of form is that the team is superbly fit.

All the players are at the top of their fitness and this help them to outplay the rivals in crucial moments of the games:

“You don’t always realise the speed those guys move at, even in comparison with other Premier League players,” Nevin told to Chelsea official website.

Pedro looks fast anyway – those legs move like the roadrunner from the old cartoons.

Willian speeding away to score his goal maybe raised an eyebrow or two but we know he is quick also and he looks it.

Eden Hazard at the moment when he turns on the afterburners crushes defenders’ spirits, and that’s before his skills are utilised.

“To be honest, with his physique it is slightly surprising he is quite so fast but Chelsea fans are aware of it now, especially over those first 10 to 20 yards.

“The surprise of course to some degree is Diego Costa.

“Once again we know he is quick but with his physique, power, size and walking style come on be honest, you re amazed he is that quick. I know I am.”

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After Manchester City v Chelsea final whistle it seemed that Citizens‘ boss Pep Guardiola snubbed his ex player Cesc Fabregas, that walked toward him to shake his hand.

Anyway, the Spanish coach wanted to make clear that he simply didn’t notice the Chelsea midfielder on the pitch and that the pair greeted in the dressing room, away from cameras’ eyes:

“I said hello to Cesc in the dressing room. On the field I didn’t realise he was trying to greet me,” Guardiola said while speaking to the press ahead of City’s Champions League tie with Celtic tonight.

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Chelsea legend and now pundit Pat Nevin claims Diego Costa reminds him of one of his old Blues team-mates, another Stamford Bridge legend that scored 147 goals in 335 appearances in his nine years in West London:

“In that one specific area he [Costa] does remind me of a youthful Kerry Dixon,” Nevin told Chelsea official website.

“In training with Kerry on the sprints, I used to think I would be sharper off the mark than him, or I could zip over 20 or 30 yards faster than him now and again.

“Well I might have done him in the very occasional 10 yarder, but anything longer and no chance, nobody got near him. 

“Even if he didn’t at first look that fast, you got to learn he was deceptive, he was lightning. 

“Diego Costa may not be quite as quick as Kerry was, but I suspect he is right up there in the sprints when he needs to be.”

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Slaven Bilic is looking for a new goalkeeper and targeted Chelsea’s Asmir Begovic.

The West Ham manager already dropped Adrian after the Spanish keeper committed some silly errors and still not convinced by Darren Randolph.

The Croatian coach would like to bring the Blues player to East London already in January.

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