In thirty games, we might look back and laugh. Two losses on the season, Premier League champions. Mourinho fuming, Guardiola talking about the moral high ground, Wenger in fourth. Chelsea more than doubling our current record of consecutive wins in the Premier League; Costa running away with the scoring title; Hazard once again that Hazard; Oscar finally living up to his full potential; Kanté playing like Kanté of last season, pre-season, a few games ago; Gary Cahill, player of the year.
These are all things that still could happen.
But they probably won't.
Despite our best hopes, despite Conte's best intentions, despite everyone's best attitudes in training, they're probably not going to happen.
Ten points from six games, this might just be our level. Wins against the likes of Watford and Burnley. Losses against the other big teams. The occasional farcical draw. Ten points from six games puts us on pace for about 63. Better than tenth, but highly unlikely for top four.
What if this is our level?
Maybe it's all about proper expectations. Maybe all this time Conte's been trying to tell us and we just weren't listening. All this talk about work and improvement wasn't just lip service.
How much improvement could we realistically expect from any of our players? How much improvement could we realistically expect in just a few months? Players like Fàbregas and Cahill and Ivanović and Matić are what they are. In the infamous words of Dennis Green, they are who we thought they were.
What are we to do? What can we do? We have to place our trust in at least eleven players each game; it's easy to say play Cesc or drop Ivanović or change this and that and the other, but what do you do when that doesn't work either? Constant chop-and-change is no way to run a team, and certainly while the team remains in transition, that includes the manager himself. Consistency breeds confidence breeds winning breeds further confidence and so on.
"I was a footballer and it happens that in one game you don't have a good performance for many reasons, but I hope to improve this situation. We've had defeat in two big games. For this reason we must be humble and understand the moment and that we need to work a lot to improve and change our story."
-Antonio Conte; source: Chelsea FC
We must break the cycle. Re-establish the culture. Stay humble, work hard, etc, etc, etc. The objectives are simple. The path is anything but.