Chelsea FC Midfielder Cesc Fabregas has conceded that Conte ‘Italian mentality’ has been too demanding this season, but denies that Chelsea squad have betrayed their boss.
Conte responded angrily a week ago to the growing speculation that he could be sacked after reports that his players had complained bitterly to ex-assistant coach Steve Holland about Conte’s intensive training.
The Italian marked the bits of gossip as ‘bulls***’ and Fabregas back up his the Italian affirmation that the players were behind him, however, told the BBC that the controlled fitness sessions of last season were ‘impossible’ with the addition of mid-week Europe elite football ( Champions League)
‘No, not at all,’ Fabregas replied when asked whether Chelsea’s players were unhappy with Conte’s training methods. ‘Last year there was no Champions League and we all know it is tough when you are involved in the Champions League.
‘His methods, the fitness coach…it’s a very Italian mentality. We have to run and be fit and recover well. But this year, because of the Champions League, we do not have enough time because every three days we are playing.
‘You cannot play on Wednesday, play Saturday and then, Thursday, what? You‘re going to run? It’s impossible, you need to recover, you need to be well for the weekend.’
The former Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder and his teammates have been blamed for betraying their managers sometime recently, with the Spaniard forced to deny claims two years back that he led a resistance intended to expel Jose Mourinho from Stamford Bridge.
Be that as it may, Fabregas says he is still haunted by Chelsea’s crumple, which prompted Mourinho being sacked in the wake of winning the Premier League.
‘I still wonder myself sometimes,’ he replied when asked how Chelsea went from title winners to, at one stage, relegation candidates. ‘You go to bed and think about many things and cannot sleep. It still bothers me. If I could see it from the outside as a fan, I would think, “These guys are not even trying”.
‘My relationship with Jose is good. We still talk today. He is probably the manager that I’ve had the best connection with, apart from Arsene Wenger.’