Consecutive losses to Liverpool and Arsenal almost put Chelsea title bid in jeopardy and as expected the English media blew it up, already suggesting the sack of Antonio Conte. Fast forward to today, the Italian manager has not only silenced his critics, he has also taken the Premier League by storm.
In fact the former Juventus coach has nothing else to prove to his doubters this season, his proven tactics showed again in his side triumph over Pep Guardiola’s Man City on Saturday. Conte has transformed Chelsea from a sinking team to a title contender and are now three points clear at the top of the league standings.
Since the loss at Arsenal, they have won eight games on the trot, the latest being the emphatic 3-1 win at Man City. Conte has got his tactics right, switching to a 3-4-3 formation has brought the best out of his players and impressive results too. He is the first manager to win eight consecutive league games since Jose Mourinho recorded nine straight wins in 2006/2007.
They outclassed City in the second half recovering from Gary Cahill own goal to win 3-1, condemning the Sky Blues to their first home league this season
Like Guardiola, he is a newcomer to the Premier League and he has less reputation than the former Barcelona boss but he has proved it is no more by name. Results can only be gotten on the pitch not in the media.
Another proving factor has been Conte’s consistent with his team selection. He made a change to his team, his first in eight matches, due to the injury sustained by Nemanja Matic, replacing him with Cesc Fabregas.
However, one can say Chelsea have profited from their absence from midweek matches. They are not participating in the Champions League and have been eliminated from the EFL Cup.