Conte’s correct of course, to call both of Arsenal’s goal very lucky, though that’s unlikely to play too well in the immediate aftermath of Chelsea’s 2-1 loss at the Emirates to Arsenal in the semifinal of the League Cup.
Conte to Sky on loss: "There is disappointment for the final result. I think I must be pleased for the effort of all my players. We tried to reach the final. We conceded two unlucky goals - two deflections are very difficult to see during a game." #cfc— Liam Twomey (@liam_twomey) January 24, 2018
Unlucky Antonio Rudiger was involved in both Arsenal goals, getting the credit for the own goal on the equalizer and the assist on the winner via crucial deflections. Chelsea’s defending certainly could’ve been better on the first, to not give the Arsenal player a free header, but they didn’t do much wrong on the second. Sometimes you get the bounces, sometimes you don’t.
But in this business, results are the only thing that count, and Conte has now failed to beat Arsenal in 7 out of 8 tries since taking over as Chelsea head coach. That futile streak is starting to grate on many.
All we can do however is get back to the work, to the commitment and the effort.
Conte: 'It's right for us to dream, because dreams help you work, but at the same time we must be realistic.' #ARSCHE— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) January 24, 2018
For this season, the League Cup dream is over and the Premier League dream is all but over. That leaves the FA Cup (4th round coming up next, on Sunday) and the Champions League. And of course a top four finish, which isn’t a trophy, but is still a necessity.
It’s easy to be negative and to overreact. The squad isn’t the best in England and it isn’t without systemic issues. It’s not perfect. No one’s perfect. But today’s result owed as much to bad luck as anything else, if not more. That happens. Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes you don’t. And sometimes you get unlucky. Often, you can overcome that. Today, there was just too much for Chelsea to overcome, especially with Willian’s injury thrown in there as well.
There will be better days and better results. Probably as soon as this weekend.
Losing (to Arsenal, especially) hurts and losing at the penultimate hurdle hurts as well. But the work doesn’t stop.