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Conte disappointed with result as Chelsea resort to playing Burnley’s long-ball game

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Two points dropped or one point gained? Perhaps time will tell.

In a couple months, we might look back on this tough away point as a helpful result, which extended our lead at least temporarily to ten points at the top of the table in mid-February. Or, in the extreme opposite future, we might look back on this as the beginning of the end, when Manchester City began their fight-back and closed the gap just eight, which at that time was still the largest lead at the top of any of Europe’s major leagues.

For now, the overriding emotion seems to be disappointment, including from the boss.

“We must be disappointed for this point because I think they stopped our game. We could have won, it's a pity because we started really well and created chances to score goals and then Burnley found the draw with the free-kick.”

"But now it's important to re-start. It's a draw, we take a point but we must be a bit disappointed.”

It looked like Chelsea might run away with it in the first 20 minutes, but after Brady’s picture-perfect free-kick found the back of the net — first direct free-kick goal Chelsea conceded in almost four years — Burnley battened down the hatches and Chelsea devolved into a sub-standard patterns of play.

"It's a pity because we started very well, we kept the situation under control and also created many chances to score the goal in this time, maybe we can kill the game but it didn't happen.”

"Then [they scored] a free-kick, then second half it became a physical game with the long ball. We don't know this type of game, the long ball is not easy to play here with Burnley.”

“They took 29 points here now after this game, from 30 points in the table. At home for sure they're a strong team, but I think we're disappointed not to win.”

Prior to the game, Conte talked a lot about keeping the right focus and the right tension in the squad. But while the players showed plenty of commitment and plenty of fight, their decisions and overall play were not quite good enough.

“For sure, we already know this [that Chelsea have to work hard]. Now there are 13 games. We know the way is a long way to go, but it is important to continue to work in this way, to play this type of game, to fight.”

-Antonio Conte; source: Sky via Goal

Room for improvement then in the next couple weeks, before the next league game at home to Swansea on February 25.