We are all familiar with Antonio Conte’s buzzwords by now. Hard work. Will. Fight. Commitment. Enthusiasm, ambition, desire. Paying great attention.
All those qualities were on full display Monday night at the Bridge, as a relentless Chelsea put hapless Middlesbrough to the sword, taking an important step towards this season’s title while confirming the visitors’ swift return to the second division after achieving promotion last season.
“For sure now I am a bit relaxed. This step was big. It was a big win at this stage of the season. It’s great. Now we need to do another step. We have the possibility to do this on Friday against West Brom, but for sure it won’t be easy because West Brom are a really good, physical team so we must pay attention.”
“But for sure today we did a big step. I must be honest, and I must be pleased for the performance, the commitment, the desire and the will of my players on the pitch. It’s great to score three goals, to create many chances and also to keep another clean sheet. I’m satisfied.”
With just three points separating Chelsea from our sixth league crown, Conte’s happiness is perfectly understandable. Of course, come tomorrow or the day after, depending on when training resumes, it will be back to business as usual.
“We are very close and we must be honest about this, but we need to do another little step and win another game. I repeat: it won’t be easy.”
“Now it’s very important to rest, because in this game you lose a lot of physical and mental energy, and then prepare in two days for another tough game against West Brom.”
“It won’t be easy because they are a really good team and they will want to play a top game against us. We have three chances to become champions. We are very close but we need to make another step.”
So, all the pressure on Friday at the Hawthorns, which is never an easy place to play. But pressure is what makes champions.
“Now there is pressure, but it’s a good pressure, a pressure that must bring excitement in our heart. The target is very close and we must have enthusiasm, will and desire to reach this target because my players deserve to win the league.”
-Antonio Conte; source: Chelsea FC
Are you hearts excited?