With just eight Premier League games to go this season, Chelsea face a real battle to secure a t0p-four finish and the place in the Champions League next season that comes with it.
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The Blues currently trail fourth-placed Liverpool by four points, but that gap could widen this weekend as Antonio Conte’s side are in FA Cup action while the Reds will face Watford in the league.
In turn, the picture could become a little more difficult by the time the weekend is over as the pressure builds, but Conte has been speaking about Chelsea’s ability to attract top players regardless of whether or not they secure a seat at Europe’s top table.
Ideally, it would be a selling point for any club. Every top player will undoubtedly harbour ambitions of playing in Europe’s leading competition, but Conte believes that recent history at Stamford Bridge shows that it won’t be a decisive factor in most cases.
“Don’t forget that two years ago, Chelsea finished 10th with many players of this season, and they decided to continue to play for this club,” he is quoted as telling reporters by Goal.com.
“I don’t know if it’s a problem to attract a great player or not. If you remember last season we won the title, and then you can see our transfer market. I think this is not the most important thing, if you win or stay in the Champions League.”
Between now and the end of the season, Chelsea must have clear objectives that have been altered as the campaign has gone on.
A top four finish in the Premier League coupled with success in the FA Cup will surely ensure it’s seen as a decent year in the circumstances, but there’s a long way to go before that happens and Conte will surely be hoping he gets another chance to coach against the top sides in Europe next year too.