Friday, 20 April, 2018

Conte Hails Chelsea "Spirit", "Passion" Vs Southampton; Praises Giroud

Eden Hazard Chelsea Barcelona Champions League GETTYEden Hazard failed to impress as Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League by Barcelona
Elias Hubbard | 15 April, 2018, 00:37

Chelsea boss Antonio Conte left out Antonio Rudiger for his side's 3-2 win at Southampton as punishment for his tactical criticism of his side's collapse at Stamford Bridge last weekend against West Ham United. With AP Photos.Chelsea scored three goals in eight minutes, including two from substitute Olivier Giroud, in a stirring comeback from 2-0 down to beat Southampton 3-2 in the Premier League.

Chelsea are seven points behind rival Tottenham Hotspur for fourth, who have a game in hand on them.

Chelsea found themselves trailing 2-0 to struggling Saints in the 60th minute, as Dusan Tadic and debutant Jan Bednarek got the goals for the home side. Reigning Premier League champions Chelsea fell behind 2-0 to Southampton, a very proud club that is having an terrible season, and in serious peril of being relegated.

"The first half wasn't good, not only from a tactical aspect", Conte told Sky Sports. "I don't understand why after 1-0 we always drop and let the opponent get more ball possession".

And although Conte was impressed with the comeback - the first time Chelsea had come from two goals down to win a league game since 2002 - he was keen to ensure people knew his opinion of their first-half display.

"The most important thing is to show in every game the right passion and to fight until the end". "I think we didn't show great spirit, great desire, great fight for a good result". We need to finish this season in the best possible way.

"I think the first half was very negative".

"Southampton played a good game and took a lot of confidence after their first goal because they were nervous at the start". In the second [half] I saw a great reaction, greater desire, the right way to win the game.

"I am disappointed in the first half, I am the first to take the fault for that, but in the second half my players deserved credit".

We're not convinced. Players have fallen out with Conte in the past and subsequently been frozen out, a la David Luiz. "He has specific characteristics, he played well and I am happy for him".

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