Authors Posts by Francesca Ceciarini

Francesca Ceciarini


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After the important win against West Bromwich Albion Chelsea manager Antonio Conte praised second-half substitute Cesc Fabregas, who supplied the pass which led to Diego Costa’s winner

“Cesc is an important player for usWe all know his quality, it’s very clear.

“Today it was important to change the cards on the table and find a new solution to cut the point of reference for West Brom. I put on a player who is very good technically, and with a great personality.”

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Chelsea could face a potential point deduction following last week’s ugly scenes at the end of the Manchester City clash, sparked by Sergio Aguero’s horror challenge on David Luiz.

This could happen because the Blues were involved in this kind of episodes too many times in the past years.

When Antonio Conte was asked about this in his post-match press conference, he replied:

“Are you joking? If you’re involved in a situation and the fault is not yours, why must you pay? I don’t understand. My players tried to keep the calm. We are trying to improve in all aspects. You must be honest to understand when there is a fault of one team or both teams.

“In every game you fight a lot during the 90 minutes and then when the ref blows his whistle you finish. I don’t know what happened in the past but I know what’s happening in the present. My players tried to keep the calm.”

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Diego Costa shows his passion celebrating the winner against WBA © Francesca Ceciarini

Antonio Conte praised again fantastic Diego Costa that gave Chelsea three points with his stunning winner with fifteen minutes to go:

“He’s showing great passion, he likes to play football. He’s showing me great commitment and work-rate with and without the ball to help the team. It’s important for him to continue in this way, I’m very happy with him. Diego is a great striker and he can continue to improve his football but I’m satisfied with the work we are doing with him and the team.

Conte also hailed his improved attitude on the pitch:

“January is arriving and it’s incredible because after the Arsenal defeat he had four yellow cards, he was on the edge and he continued to stay on the edge. I think he can arrive in January without a yellow card, I hope he can.”


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Antonio Conte analysed the important win against WBA in the Stamford Bridge press-room after the game:

“It was a very difficult game but we knew it would be, I spoke a lot in the week about the difficulty of the game because we faced a very tough team, very physical and difficult to break down.

“I’m pleased because we showed great maturity and intelligence to find the right solution. It’s another clean sheet and now it’s important to think about the next game away at Sunderland. We have only two days to prepare for the game but we must be focused, it’s an important period. Christmas is very difficult for all the teams so it’s important to win, be focused and play football with good intensity.

“I’m pleased today because this game was very difficult and I like to see my team fight in the same way as West Brom, it wasn’t easy, but they showed me great character and a great motivation to win.

“I’d prefer to score early and take the lead but we know it’s not easy in this league. We are working very well on different aspects, not only tactical, but physical, to arrive at the end and play with great intensity, to run and to put great pressure on.”


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Today it was not an easy win for Chelsea against West Brom but Antonio Conte is satisfied not only for the three very important points, that allow the Blues to lead the table three points cleat of Arsenal, but also because the team showed a real will to win and the usual huge character:

It’s important when you face this type of team, it’s very difficult to break down,” the Italian said to BT Sports after the game.

“Today it was difficult to find space and there were a lot of players behind the ball. I am pleased for the character and passion of my players.

Diego Costa has fantastic commitment and work rate during the game with and without the ball. He was good to score the goal. He is playing fantastic football and it’s important because he is working a lot for the team.

“I tried to change the cards, and to find a different solution. West Bromwich prepared well with great organisation. It was important to change the game and Cesc Fabregas is a good player when he came on, and I like him a lot.”

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Team News


– John Terry still out for gluteus injury

Oscar out for sickness

– Kurt Zouma still have to find 100% fitness after ACL injury

David Luiz to be valued after hurting his knee in Aguero‘s challenge last week

– Cesc Fabregas could replace Matic again in the starting XI



– Goalkeeper Boaz Myhill still out for ankle injury


Possible Line Ups

CHELSEA – Courtois, Azpilicueta,  David Luiz, Cahill; Moses, Kante, Fabregas, Marcos Alonso; Willian, Diego Costa, Hazard.

WEST BROM – Forster, Nyom, Evans, Dawson, McAuley, Phillips, Morrison, Fletcher, Brunt, Yacob, Rondon.



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Tony Pulis

West Bromwich manager Tony Pulis admits he is scared by super-fit Chelsea, who come from a 8 wins in a row run:

“I’ll take a sleeping tablet on Saturday night and then wake up and hope it’s all over,” he said before the game.

“They’ve got three fantastic players, but that’s what the Premier League is all about.

“We go against Manchester United and they’ll have similar players, Arsenal have got similar players.

“That’s what makes this league a great league. The top, top teams have top, top players.”


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Former Chelsea and WBA goalkeeper Tony Godden spoke to the Blues official website ahead of tomorrow’s clash at Stamford Bridge, where the teams will face each other:

West Brom are doing well and I am glad they stuck with Tony Pulis,”

“He is a very thorough and knowledgeable man and a good coach.

Speaking about the two keeper he stated:

 “Thibaut Courtois and Ben Foster are excellent. They make saves.

“You hear managers saying they want keepers who can control a ball and pass 30 yards and it makes me smile because my question is can he make saves, because that is how he is going to win you a game.

“These two are keepers that win points for their clubs.”

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte admitted he was scared by Sergio Aguero’s insane tackle on David Luiz and is not sure he can select him for West Brom game, as the Brazilian suffered a little injury after the terrible challenge.

“I have to check [today] on his recovery because this tackle was very bad,” Conte said.

“It will be very important for him and for me to decide whether he’s able to play on Sunday. After I saw the replays, that’s when I saw this was very dangerous for David Luiz. I watched the images and I was afraid. I was scared.”

If Luiz is able to play it will assist Conte in maintaining an enviable record. So far the Italian manager has managed to keep his squad largely free of injuries, and as a result Chelsea have made fewer team changes than any other Premier League club.

“Traumatic problems are very difficult to avoid, but to avoid muscular problems is important, to have a method, a philosophy, in training sessions and to work with the players together with the medical staff and try and find the best solution.”

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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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