Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte: 'FA Cup remains a priority'

Adjust Comment Print

"No, no. As you know very well, in every moment I have underlined the commitment of the players".

When he was asked about squad rotation ahead of the Champions League fixture against Barcelona next week, Conte said: "We have in front of us two weeks that are very tough, for this reason it is right to have a programme and a plan to face these two weeks in the right way but as you know, we want to try to go through to the next round of the FA Cup".

Conte confirmed he will look to alter his starting XI for Friday's FA Cup fifth round tie ahead of an important week in which Chelsea play their Champions League first leg tie against Barcelona before facing Manchester United on Super Sunday. "There are three priorities for the rest of the season". We want to try to fight for every competition.

Conte readily indulged talk of Chelsea sacking him earlier this month, just over half a season after leading the team to the top-flight title, as he took to publicly criticising the club's transfer dealings and suffered consecutive defeats against Bournemouth and Watford.

Two men who can ill-afford to slack off in the manner Keane suggested are record signing Alvaro Morata and new recruit Olivier Giroud. I thought it was a great opportunity to mentally freshen our minds up and physically freshen the bodies up. "In every training session I see great commitment".

Ross Barkley (hamstring) will miss Hull's visit to west London, while David Luiz and Tiemoue Bakayoko have been unable to overcome knocks in time to feature. We need the magic of the FA Cup and we'll need a lot of it because we're going up against a top side with an excellent manager and players who are used to winning things. We also have Chalobah's brother, Sterling and Scott, they are coming with us for the game tomorrow. I think Alvaro is a player with a good responsibility and maturity. Don't forget that we are playing with the [same] system from last season.