Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has called on his club to finish this season with “pride,” and “desire.”
It’s been a tough season for the former Juventus coach with issues both on and off the pitch seemingly leaving him headed for the Stamford Bridge exit in May, despite winning the Premier League so impressively during his maiden campaign in England.
Chelsea’s 3-1 home loss to London rival’s Spurs last weekend, saw them slip eight points behind Mauricio Pochettino’s men who sit in fourth position in the table, and all but ended the Blues chances of finishing in the top four.
The Stamford Bridge club are still in the FA Cup and face a struggling Southampton in the semi-final at Wembley on April 22.
Speaking ahead of his sides home Premier League fixture against West Ham on Sunday, Conte called on his players to finish the season strongly, although he also aimed a thinly veiled dig at his club’s board for not backing him in the transfer market, and therefore finishing the season at the exact level that they deserve.
“Despite a lot of defeats this season, we have to try to put everything, everything, everything and show great pride because we are Chelsea and when you play or are a coach in this type of club you must show great pride, great desire until the end.” Conte said.
“You do not give up. It is not my philosophy and I do not want to see one person try to give up.”
“We have to face this situation with great pride. If you are doing everything to try to have a good season, it’s OK for me. The problem I have is if you don’t give 100%.
“If I go to my house with regret – “Oh today, I could have done this instead I avoid…” – no. I’m trying to do everything and I’m trying to put 120% every day to try to finish the season in the best possible way.
“I repeat, you have to understand if our season at the end we did maximum and we reached the right place, it be also this. That we are doing the maximum and our level is this now.”