Published: Sun, May 13, 2018
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Conte thinks Emenalo's departure was big loss for Chelsea

Conte thinks Emenalo's departure was big loss for Chelsea

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has sought to rationalise the defending champions' poor season as he prepares his team for a final attempt at claiming a top-four finish.

"To lose Michael, it was a big loss for us", Conte said.

'I think the experience in Italy was great for him, and it was great for Napoli to have a manager with his experience.

Conte appears to have all but accepted that is the most likely scenario, but the Blues boss insists the club is still in a better position than when he arrived following a campaign that saw the departure of Jose Mourinho and a lowly position of tenth in 2015-16. Like their fellow FA Cup finalists, Chelsea have had a hard season, crashing out early from the Champions League and even further off the pace when it came to keeping up with the Premier League Champions, Manchester City. This season, until he left, he helped me a lot.

"For sure, probably, I will go to Milan for the game for Pirlo on the 21st [of May] 'Then we don't know, at the end of the season, if we have friendly games", he responded when asked about Chelsea's summer plans.

Asked if Emenalo's decision to leave had made his job more hard, Conte replied: "Yes".

However, if he does remain at St James' Park, Benitez, who will send his side out for the final time this season against former club Chelsea on Sunday, believes his team have shown they can compete and should be aiming higher than for mere survival.

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Asked if Chelsea need to find someone to supply the expertise once provided by Emenalo, Conte added: "But this is not my decision". This is a decision for others'.

Emenalo joined Monaco as technical director three weeks after his exit from Chelsea. "I'm not in a position".

Conte was joined in London by wife Elisabetta and daughter Vittoria ahead of the 2017-18 season and described how his family have experienced every emotion with him.

"If someone slips in the last game, you must be ready".

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Having been limited in his efforts to strengthen his squad in the last 12 months as a result of the financial constraints under which he has had to work, Benitez has concentrated on improving the players he already had at his disposal. It's normal to have a lot of speculation around you.

"This season he did a fantastic job".

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