Wednesday 20 February 2019

Antonio Conte admits his troubles at Chelsea are keeping him awake at night

Antonio Conte says he is not responsible for signings
Antonio Conte says he is not responsible for signings

Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has looked pretty miserable amid rumours that he is unsettled at Chelsea and now he has admitted he is struggling to sleep at night.

The Blues' schedule means Sunday's FA Cup fourth-round tie with Newcastle is their eighth of nine games in January and so far Chelsea have won just one of those fixtures, last weekend's Premier League victory at Brighton, while they squeezed by Norwich on penalties in a third-round replay.

Conte insists he is happy at Chelsea, but his downbeat demeanour has posed questions over his long-term future, as he revealed he is struggling to switch off from his work when he goes home.

"I live this job with great passion, with great love and for this reason sometimes I don't sleep," he confirmed.

The Italian reviews his team's performances on nights when he cannot sleep, which may not be an ideal remedy if those performances are the reason he is being kept awake.

"When I don't sleep I usually continue to work with the computer also because I don't want to create problems with my wife," he added.

"I go to the living room and then sometimes I start to work, to watch the game or to try to find a new solution.

"To watch the game many times is important to understand positive things and negative things and to try to improve your team, especially when you lose.

"For me, it is very important to understand quickly the reason we lost."

Conte has repeatedly hinted at tensions at Chelsea, largely over recruitment, with Ross Barkley, Chelsea's only signing so far this month, is poised to make his full debut against Newcastle.

Barkley has made one substitute appearance since his move from Everton on January 5, having last played in May following a hamstring injury, but setbacks to striker Alvaro Morata (back) and playmaker Willian (hamstring) necessitate the England midfielder's inclusion.

Cesc Fabregas (hamstring) could return, but Thibaut Courtois (ankle) is still out so Willy Caballero is expected to continue in goal.

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