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  • By Paul Lagan

Conte: It's important to look at ourselves

Antonio Conte cuts a forlorn and seemingly lonely figure when talking about a defeat.

And he’s not afraid to show it.

He said: “I think that we must be unhappy after a defeat. It is not one defeat but two in a row and for sure this is a not a positive moment for many reasons.

“We are playing without important players and every game we have a new injury. Moses's injury is another big loss for us”

Conte does not rate losing to a top side and losing to a struggler any differently - a loss is a loss.

“A defeat is always a defeat,” he said.

“For this reason I repeat we mustn't be happy. This season will be very difficult for us. For this reason we have to put 150 per cent in, 100 per cent won't be enough.”

He he learned anything new about players in last two games?

“I know my players and my squad very well,” he said. “I am working from last season. But I have players with a great will to work and fight. For sure we have to find the strength to overcome this moment. Everyone can see our situation.”

Are the players not trying as hard as last season?

“No, I think every season is different. Last season is the past,” he said.

“Now it is another squad, different players, and for this reason if we compare last season we didn't play Europa League or Champions League. This season we are facing four competitions and we are having a few problems doing this. When you have a few injuries, you are in trouble.”

Chelsea are nine points behind Manchester City - are they unstoppable?

Conte said: “I think that it is very important for us to look at ourselves. You know very well the potential of the other teams but it is important for us to look at ourselves.

“This season will be difficult but also we have to understand this season we have to try build something important for the future, to give the opportunity to the new players to have more experience in this league, to give the opportunity to young players to show they deserve to stay and play for Chelsea. We must have patience this season to understand it won't be easy.”

Striker Michy Batshuayi was clearly unhappy when he was hauled off the Selhurst Park pitch by Conte - but Conte is not hanging him out to dry.

“I think the performance of the whole team was bad, not one player or two players, but all the players. Our performance was bad.

“I trust in every player and try to give everyone the opportunity to take the chance. But also because we have Morata and then Batshuayi.”

Did Batshuayi take his chance? -Again, he would not be drawn.

“The performance of the whole team was bad. Not one or two players. Why do we have to speak about Batshuayi and not other players?”

Because he reacted badly when you took him off?

“Yeah? I didn't see this. But it is normal to be angry after a bad performance, but every player had a bad performance.”

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