Antonio Conte has admitted that victory in today’s FA Cup final may not be able to save him from the sack.
The Italian was an instant sensation upon his arrival in the Premier League, winning the title at the first attempt after introducing his three-at-the back system with great effect.
While nobody seemed to have an answer for Conte’s system last season as the Blues romped to the title, everything has seemingly changed in his second year in England. The former Champions have been found to be lacking in a number of departments, especially up front as they slipped from first down to fifth and out of the Champions League.
Even though the Italian has said he is planning on seeing out the final year of his contract at Stamford Bridge, it has been widely speculated that the Conte will become the latest managerial casualty under Roman Abramovic
There is a chance for Chelsea to salvage something from their season in this afternoons FA Cup final at Wembley, but even Conte has said it may not be enough to save his job:
“Sometimes you can win but the club decides to sack you anyway because they have a reason to.
“Last season we were heroes for Chelsea’s fans. Now our status, me and the players, has changed. But in my soul and my heart, I’m always a hero because I gave 120 per cent this season to solve the problems.
“Our job is very difficult. This season, I worked better than last. And, for sure, I worked harder.
“I didn’t change my commitment to the club. That has always been the same. I don’t know if something changed.”
Conte has been linked with a return to Italy by taking over at either Napoli or Inter Milan.
If he were to be sacked after winning the FA Cup, it would echo the events of 2016, when Manchester United lifted the cup under Louis van Gaal, only to terminate his contract within hours of lifting the famous old trophy. United also finished fifth in the Premier League that season.