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Conte plays down exit talk, says future is at Chelsea

08 April 2017

"I know this manager when he was in Greece [with Olympiacos] and playing Champions League football and I was in Bayern Munich", he said. "We want to improve for this part of the season and especially for next season". While Chelsea are not yet mathematically confirmed for the title, Wednesday's three points against the pre-season title favorites have gone a long way towards restoring any confidence that may have been sapped by the surprise defeat at the weekend.

They took a 10th-minute lead when Eden Hazard scored via a deflection off his Belgium team-mate Vincent Kompany, who made his first City start since January.

"For this reason, we must be focused and try to win six games. Pastorello is a friend, I know him well, but I don't like when others speak for me", Conte told British media.

Perhaps his most surprising move in that respect has been the experimenting with winger Jesus Navas as a right-back.

"So this was another step - a big step - against a great team with a lot of qualities".

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Chelsea Manager Antonio Conte himself admitted that the league title race has gotten more interesting now with Tottenham Hotspur legitimately back in the hunt, at seven points behind the Blues.

"I was expecting from the beginning of the season to fight for the Premier League until the end... we are a little bit disappointed, but I am quite happy with the way we made good things in this season".

"Now the situation is clear - eight games left in the league and the [FA Cup] semifinal".

The wild celebrations from boss Mauricio Pochettino, his coaching staff and Tottenham's players and fans underlined their relief at a result that allows them to continue dreaming of a first English title since 1961. They could also end the season with silverware if they win the FA Cup. I was helpful to the team. I like to have the main role in the game. "I tried to do my best, mark him in the best way possible, because he is a great player and thank God we managed to do that".

Conte plays down exit talk, says future is at Chelsea