Authors Posts by Lorenzo Semino

Lorenzo Semino

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Manchester City are Carabao Cup 2017/18 champions after beating Arsenal in the final at Wembley. Pep Guardiola earns the first trophy of season as goals from Sergio Aguero, captain Vincent Kompany and David Silva secured a 3-0 win.

The Citizens will face Arsenal on Thursday again before the Premier League fixture against Chelsea on 4th of March. The Blues are looking for a strong comeback following today’s 2-1 loss at Old Trafford, which means Antonio Conte‘s men are 5th on Premier League table with 53 points.

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Manchester United striker Romelu Lukaku, who scored a crucial goal in the 2-1 win over Chelsea today, left Stamford Bridge in 2013 after joining the Blues from Anderlecht in 2011.

The Belgian star, who had been heavily linked with a move back to Chelsea last summer (before Alvaro Morata joined the club) told MUTV: “This was not a more significant victory for me. I’m just happy with the win for the team,”

“It was an important win for us I think. It was important for us to win and to get back into second position in the league so I’m just happy with the win.”

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Chelsea manager Antonio Conte gave his thoughts also on Alvaro Morata’s disallowed goal against Manchester United. “This type of situation can change the result” the Italian said.

“For sure that is why I am positive about VAR, especially in England. We need to have this new system to help the referee and avoid big mistakes. Now it is not important to look at the past, we have to solve the problems and the present and see if we are working well.”

When asked if Alvaro Morata‘s performance today was positive, Conte added: “He played for 90 minutes. Like the other players they tried to put everything and give all ourself. For sure he can improve. Then I can take a different decision and go game by game. I took this decision to find the balance”.

 

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Danny Drinkwater spoke ahead of tomorrow’s Premier League fixture between Manchester United and Chelsea at Old Trafford.

The England international told Chelsea’s official website: “I am feeling good, I am working on my strength and I am getting settled in. The lads have been top so it has been quite easy getting used to everything.”

Drinkwater, who left Manchester United in 2012 before lifting the title with Leicester City in 2015/16 campaign, faced the Red Devils in 2014: “That was at the King Power when we beat them 5-3 – he said – That was crazy that game, and we drew 1-1 at Old Trafford just before we won the league. I got sent off with about three minutes to go and I think I kicked every cupboard in the changing room watching the last couple of minutes of that game!”

 

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Willian was outstanding recently as the Brazilian scored against Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League and Hull City in the FA Cup.

When asked if the Blues’ star will be selected in the starting XI to face Manchester United tomorrow, Antonio Conte said: “I have to try to make the best decision for the team. Now he is playing because he is deserving to play, not because there is some regret for the past”.

“If a player shows me during the training sessions that he is on top form and wants to run offensively and defensively, he plays, otherwise he stays on the bench or in the stands. This is not only for one player; this is for all my players. This means a winning mentality”.

“Willian played well against Barcelona. I am very happy with my choice. Before the game, some people said, ‘Why Willian and not Morata?’ Willian deserved it more than Morata. In the previous game he played well, and I think I made a fantastic choice, and I would like to take my credit!”

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More from Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, who had his say ahead of tomorrow’s Premier League clash against Manchester United at Old Trafford.

The Blues are currently 3 points behind the Red Devils, while Liverpool remain 3rd with 54 points.

Conte told journalists: “We missed one game, against Watford, apart from that, from the start of the season our mentality was top, and I must be pleased about this”.

“A winning mentality doesn’t mean you have to win every game. A winning mentality is the way you prepare the game; the way you show 100 per cent commitment during training sessions. A winning mentality is to always have good behaviour, to respect your coach, your team-mates, the fans, the club, the opponent”.

“This is a winning mentality, and in every game to only have one idea: to try to win the game. It doesn’t mean you are able to win every game. Sometimes it can happen that the mind switches off, for example against Watford, not only for one player but for the whole team. It was a pity but I think we learned a lot from this game”.

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COLOGNE, GERMANY - FEBRUARY 02: Michy Batshuayi of Dortmund celebrates scoring his second goal on his debut during the Bundesliga match between 1. FC Koeln and Borussia Dortmund at RheinEnergieStadion on February 2, 2018 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Chelsea loanee Michy Batshuayi, who scored twice in the first-leg of Europa League clash against Atalanta last week, was in the squad who passed through the next stage following a vivid 1-1 in Italy. The Belgian international took to social medias just after the game to complain after alleged racist chanting from the stands.

Batshuayi wrote: “2018 and still racists monkey noises in the stands … really ?! hope you have fun watching the rest of EuropaLeague on TV while we are through #SayNoToRacism #GoWatchBlackPanther”. Atalanta’s president instantly apologized for home fans’ misconduct during the game.

 

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Chelsea are in the UEFA Youth League quarter-finals as Joe Edwards’ Under-19 squad beat Feyenoord with a comfortable win tonight. Goals from Ampadu (6′), Redan (10′), St Clair (77′) and a couple of own goals secured the Blues a 5-2 win at the Recreation Ground in Aldershot.

Chelsea will face Real Madrid in Spain, where the first-leg “is scheduled for the week commencing 12 March”, as the Blues’ official website confirmed.

 

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Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas has warned his teammates ahead of next Champions League trip to Nou Camp, where the Blues will face Barcelona on 14th March.

The Spaniard, who left La Liga giants in 2014, told BT Sports: “It is such a shame really, I thought we were very good, we executed the game plan really well, we were compact, solid, played as a team and created lots of chances – Willian could have had a hat-trick – but we go home sad because a fantastic performance is not a fantastic result”.

“It is still open though and we and we will need another excellent performance at the Nou Camp to go through”.

Chelsea were dominant against Barcelona, before conceding a goal late in the second half: “You have to have a lot of personality to play against this team who has 70% of the ball. We have to go there to attack and score because 90 minutes defending at the Nou Camp is an eternity, it is a suicide mission. We have to play our game.”

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Chelsea manager Antonio Conte, speaking to SkySport in Italy, was also asked on Alvaro Morata‘s exclusion from the starting XI: “These games are fights and you need sacrifice” he said. “We needed a balanced squad, with [Alvaro] Morata and [Eden] Hazard together we would have risked to lose two important players in “non-possession situations. Anyway, Willian and Pedro both sacrifice themselves in a better way”.

“We must understand our players’ characteristics and what they can give you with or without the ball. Sometimes we produce undeserved seppuku, sometimes I am disappointed to make certain decisions but my task is to give balance to my squad and we must exploit all the chances we create”.

About a potential role for Italy, Conte added: “I was clear, I am contracted here until 2019 and I am committed, keen to respect this contract. Then in modern football anything can happen, some marriages come to an end for many reasons: this is our job, very particular job. If something happens, I will be grateful to be named Italy coach again”.

 

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