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Conte blames fatigue for Chelsea’s lateset goalless draw

Chelsea v Leicester City - Premier League Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Antonio Conte’s gambit to stick with mostly the same players who played in the 0-0 draw against Arsenal four days ago did not pay off, as Chelsea labored to yet another goalless draw, their third consecutive. During this remarkable streak, Chelsea have used just about every player in some capacity and tried both the 3-4-3 and 3-5-2 formations, but with largely the same results. Perhaps the biggest difference was that today, instead of struggling to finish chances, the Blues struggled to even create chances. Conte blamed this on fatigue, but after being pressed on the situation, admitted that there is a problem at the attacking end that needs to be solved.

When Conte made the famous switch from four-at-the-back to three-at-the-back last season, it was to solve a systemic issue in Chelsea’s defending. Now we’re facing the opposite problem. Conte had been a bit reluctant in admitting it up to now — concerns over finishing downplayed — but in light of yet another game where we largely failed to create good chances (see also: first halves against Norwich, Arsenal, etc), it now perhaps the time to look for a new solution. That doesn’t necessarily have to mean a new formation, but perhaps a different style of play, different sets of players, or different strategies.

Conte has shown the ability to not only switch tactics when needed but make the correct switches, so we should trust that he will push the right buttons once again.


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