This fantastic video was taken by Italian journalist Massimiliano Vitelli who was sitting behind the visitors' dugout at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, and so had an unobstructed, if angled view of Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte as he was performing his usual calisthenics on the touchline. We often see glimpses of them, but this video is an uninterrupted three-minute look at the Chelsea boss in the final minutes of Saturday's 2-1 win over Spurs.
Conte often talks about living every play, every kick, every moment along with his players, and if we needed any more proof of that, we got it here. It's debatable whether any of this has any actual effect on the players as they're playing, but if they ever glance over to the dugout or catch any fragment of what he's yelling about, surely it's more of a positive than a negative. Take just the moment when Ivanovic is facing Spurs' N'Koudou 1-v-1 right in front of Conte -- obviously, as the defender, you're concentrating on the ball, but to see your boss all crouched down in a defensive stance, getting right into it as well, is surely a confidence boost, if nothing else.
I did laugh at the very end when something clearly displeased Conte and he turned around to kick the edge of the dugout, only to miss the referee's final whistle. And then he threw his hands in the air. WE WON!
We might laugh at some of this, question whether it's useful or silly or whatever, but as a player, it's easy to see why you'd want to play for Conte. The man's right there next to you in the trenches, or at least certainly wishes he were. Perhaps these shenanigans will wear thin after a while -- they might play out a bit more annoyingly if Chelsea were losing a lot, for example -- but for now, this is absolutely brilliant.