Conte: Atmosphere is the same
Antonio Conte says the speculation over the future of Diego Costa has had no impact on the unity and spirit of Premier League title-chasing Chelsea. Costa missed last weekend's win at Leicester with a back injury amid reports of a bust-up with Conte and his backroom staff. "I found the same atmosphere we had before his injury," said Conte. "If you want to win something during the season it's important to create this unity in the team. "We're showing this. We're top of the table this is one of the most important things. I'm pleased to see this unity in my team."
Chelsea chase Alexis Sanchez transfer
The Daily Mirror reports Chelsea could attempt to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal. Antonio Conte is planning for the departure of Diego Costa, who reportedly could leave this summer for the Chinese Super League. And they are watching Sanchez’s contract impasse at the Emirates with interest - the Chilean has 18 months remaining on his current deal.
Awesome football vines collection. Part 1
There are lots of football videos posted on the web each day. There are both funny moments from different leagues and beautiful goals as well. We start to introduce the most noteworthy vines from around the web. To start with, we go with Andy Carroll and his superb goal. Carroll scored this creation of art against Crystal Palace to secure West Ham's victory. The Hammers won the game 3 goals to 0, while their star man this time was Carroll instead of Payet who was missed out from the squad. And a bit of Cristiano Ronaldo magic that we miss. The Portuguese star was one of the worst players in Real Madrid squad last Sunday against Sevilla, as Zinedine Zidane's side lost the game with 2 goals conceded in the ending. When Zlatan scores on the weekend again. Ibrahimovic saved Manchester United from a defeat once again as the striker netted his 14th league goal to level Diego Costa and Alexis Sanchez at the top of the top scorers' list. Barcelona fans after hearing about Real Madrid defeat. La Liga leader's defeat allows others to cut the gap and get closer to them. Barcelona are now just two points behind Real Madrid and one point behind Sevilla. However, Zidane's side still has one postponed match to play. And Chelsea fans after Man Utd drew Liverpool and Man City lost to Everton. Chelsea are now 7 points clear and feel comfortable at the top of the Premier League table. Conte's side defeated Leicester away from home. And finally, enjoy this amazing video with some incredible football skills, goals and, of course, funny fails. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A4ZDH7LxRv8
What can prevent Chelsea from Premier League glory?
Antonio Conte’s Chelsea continue their journey to the Premier league glory. The Blues are well-placed at the first place in the table with 7 points of advantage from their nearest rivals Tottenham and Liverpool. With 17 weeks still to go, we already have reasons to start discussions about the competition in the league. Do Chelsea have any real rivals to challenge their leadership, are there any factors that can prevent them from winning the 5th Premier league title in their history. The schedule Despite being top of the table, Chelsea are yet to meet their main rivals in the league. In the coming week, they will face tournament underdogs Hull City and will probably grab three points, though their next matches will present some major headache to Antonio Conte. First, Chelsea will have to visit Liverpool which are believed to be the main favorite to fight for the title with the London-based side. Jürgen Klopp’s men fought it till the end with Manchester United recently, conceding the equalizer only in the ending of the match. Moreover, having Philippe Coutinho back from the injury, Liverpool will receive a huge boost to their title hopes. The Reds will surely make it hard for Chelsea to take points from Anfield. The situation will get more difficult for Conte and his men days later when they host city rivals Arsenal. Wenger’s side are fourth in the league and are only one point behind Liverpool and Tottenham. The positive result against leaders could see them back to the title race which is a big temptation and motivation. And finally, Chelsea will have to face two Manchester sides in April. First, they will host Pep Guardiola’s City side on April 5, and then will visit Old Trafford 10 days later. These are too difficult exams for Hazard and Co., and if they don’t lose too many points in these 4 games, their title dreams will become reality. Concluding, we can say that nothing is decided yet and Chelsea will have to run their engine with the full power to reach the finish in the first place. Diego Costa’s problem Another problem for the London-based club is Diego Costa and his financial demands. The Spaniard has received a huge offer from Chinese Super League and is considering a move to the destination where Oscar moved weeks earlier. Being Chelsea’s top scorer and leading goalscorer in the league, Costa becomes another headache for Conte. It’s already reported that the duo had a major conflict during one of the training sessions and as a result, Diego was left out of Chelsea squad against Leicester. Costa went on to provoke Chelsea and ask a salary rise. It’s believed, that his representatives have already presented their demands to Roman Abramovich. Costa wants to earn 300.000 pounds per week which is twice as much as his current wage. It’s true, that Chelsea can satisfy these demands and forget about the danger of losing their top man to China, but this kind of atmosphere inside the team may be harming the team overall. We all know that the biggest problems have always started from minor issues that weren’t handled successfully. Summing up, we see that Chelsea will have to solve a difficult puzzle in their pursuit of happiness. They are still the favorites to win the trophy, no one can doubt it, but Premier League is full of surprises. We just have to wait and see how Antonio Conte will handle the situation. If he finds the exit from the maze, we will see John Terry lifting the EPL cup in May.
Conte: “Money not everything”
Chelsea boss Antonio Conte insists “money is not everything” as speculation continues regarding the possibility of Diego Costa moving to China. "The money is not everything,” the 47-year-old specialist said. “When you play for a great team like Chelsea, you must be pleased. This league is really competitive. I think that this league can attract every player because this league is the first in the world for a lot of positive things. "For this reason, I repeat these offers from China are not a threat for our league. Money is not everything."
Diego Costa asks salary rise
Antonio Conte will hold talks with Diego Costa on Tuesday at Chelsea's training ground. Costa's representatives are asking Chelsea to give him a new contract worth £300,000 a week. Costa's current deal has two-and-a-half years left to run. He is believed to earn £150,000 a week. Chinese club Tianjin Quanjian have told Costa's representatives they are willing to offer him a £30m-a-year contract if he moves to the Chinese Super League this month.
Conte: Costa has a back problem
Chelsea boss AntonioConte explained Diego Costa's absence for last night's win over Leicester. “If you want to know the truth. I am ready to tell the truth. On Tuesday, during the training session, Diego stopped because he felt a pain in his back, and from that moment he didn’t train during the week. “And for this reason today he wasn’t available for the starting eleven, or for the bench, or to come with the squad. This is the reason. This is the truth about Diego. “I read a lot of speculation about this topic. I can tell you that, if there are problems with the players, then I am used to, in my career, solving them in the changing room, not outside, not in a press conference. “I don’t know anything about this (interest from China). The club did not tell me about this. For this reason, it can be only speculation. “We start our training session on Tuesday and next week we will see. It’s important to understand his physical condition and then we will see if he trains with us. I don’t know (how long he will be out) because I don’t have his pain.”
Terry will not leave
John Terry will not be leaving Chelsea in the January transfer window, head coach Antonio Conte has said. Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe saying on Friday there had been no discussions over acquiring Terry. Conte later confirmed that the former England international would stay at the club, insisting he was an important player due to his fantastic work on and off the pitch. Terry has made 9 appearances during this season.
Terry to stay at Chelsea
John Terry could stay at Chelsea. According to Sky Sports, Chelsea defender John Terry will remain a Blues player until the end of the season despite interest from Bournemouth. The report said, he is committed to seeing out his contract at Stamford Bridge, which runs until the end of the season. Terry has made 9 appearances during this season.
Fenerbahce defender on Chelsea radar
Chelsea are eyeing Fenerbahce fullback Simon Kjaer. Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte feels his squad is a centre-half short, however has hit several dead ends in his pursuit of a solution. According to Gazzetta dello Sport, the 27-year-old player is now being scouted by Conte. The London club hope to convince the Turkish club to sell with an offer of €18 million. The 47-year-old specialist is specifically targeting Kjaer for playing in his favourite three-man defence.