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Conte ready to carry Chelsea momentum, confidence into Barcelona clash

Post-match comments from the Chelsea boss as Chelsea easily advance to the FA Cup quarterfinals thanks to a 4-0 win over Hull City.

Chelsea v Hull City - The Emirates FA Cup Fifth Round Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Chelsea are ready to carry the “right confidence” into Tuesday night’s all-important Champions League Round of 16 first leg match, reflected head coach Antonio Conte after a straightforward 4-0 demolition of Hull City on Friday night in the FA Cup fifth round.

“We lost two games at the end of a busy period. Now we have the right confidence again. But in the next two weeks we have to play massive games and we must be strong – Barcelona, United and City. We are ready.”

While the Blues are unlikely to find Barcelona, who have lost just 1 game all season, as easy to deal with as Hull, we have at least managed to right the ship after a couple terrible results to finish out the winter busy period.

“Good game, good performance. It was great for us. The most important thing is that we are in the next round. [...] You hope to always have a game that you can dominate. Our start was impressive. We started with great focus and concentration, will to score and wanted to go to the next round. I’m really pleased with the commitment of my players.”

In fact, the task for Conte now isn’t just to find a few in-form players and hope for the best, but rather to find the correct combination of in-form players for what could be a season-defining match (and series of matches, with back-to-back trips to Manchester coming up as well). Friday’s starting lineup suggested maybe a 3-5-2 with Hazard and Morata up front, but stellar performances from the likes of Willian and Giroud may prove hard to ignore.

“It was a positive night for us because we had the opportunity to rest some important players. At the same time, I saw players in good form. I have different options. Now we have three days to make the best decision for the game against Barcelona.”

-Antonio Conte; source: Football365

All eyes on Barcelona now.


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