Conte wary of Zlatan but says United ‘arrive at the right time’

Date published: Saturday 22nd October 2016 11:49

Antonio Conte: Chelsea job not under threat

Antonio Conte believes the visit of Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United is a timely one for Chelsea.

After chastening defeats to Arsenal and Liverpool last month, Conte feels his Blues are ready following wins over Hull and Premier League champions Leicester.

Conte said: “I think that it arrives at the right moment for us.

“It’s important to continue this way. The last game we beat a good team that last season won the title and this was important.

“On Sunday we face another great team. I want to see progress compared to Liverpool and Arsenal.

“I am confident about this. I saw fantastic commitment this week.”

Mourinho left Chelsea for a second time last December, just seven months after winning his third Premier League title. He was appointed United boss in May.

The Portuguese has at times in his career been criticised for a defensive mindset and coined the phrase ‘park the bus’, to describe rearguard tactics.

Chelsea: Eased to a 3-0 win

And Mourinho was again under fire following United’s goalless draw at Anfield on Monday.

Conte reckons there is a duty to entertain, admitting some victories earlier in his career have been unfulfilling.

“It’s important to win in the right way,” Conte added.

“We won in the past with the other clubs, but I wasn’t satisfied with the performance.

“To win is important, but it’s important also to play good football, to play with good intensity, to show always the will to win, the passion.

“I try and transfer these thoughts to my players always.”

As well as seeing Mourinho return to Stamford Bridge in opposition, Conte will be reunited with midfielder Paul Pogba, whom he signed for Juventus from Manchester United before the Frenchman returned to Old Trafford for a world record transfer fee in the summer.

Conte added: “We must pay attention to the whole Manchester United team. In Manchester United’s team there are a lot of great players.

“One is, for sure, (Zlatan) Ibrahimovic, who I consider a fantastic player.

“There are many, many players. We must pay attention to the whole team, all the players together.”

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