Antonio Conte defends Mark Hughes' Stoke squad rotation in Chelsea rout

Pedro celebrates making it 3-0 to Chelsea after 23 blistering first-half minutes at Stamford Bridge
Credit
Getty Images

Pedro celebrates making it 3-0 to Chelsea after 23 blistering first-half minutes at Stamford Bridge Credit Getty Images

The west London side return to Premier League action on Wednesday night with a trop to Arsenal.

Relating to City, who have a 15-point lead over Man United in second and 16 over Chelsea (who are third), Conte said that: "But it's normal when your competitors are doing so well, like Manchester City.it's very hard to think about fighting until the end for the title".

"This year was a fantastic year because to win the title in England is not easy". The Blues won the league title in May and also reached the FA Cup final in a glorious first season at Chelsea for the former Italy coach.

Eighteen-year-olds Tom Edwards and Josh Tymon were both handed a starting place as goals from Antonio Rudiger, Danny Drinkwater, Pedro, Willian and Davide Zappacosta handed Chelsea a comfortable victory. "We have a lot of great games to face". To be able to do this at your first try, I will remember this year in my mind forever.

Hughes left key players Xherdan Shaqiri and Joe Allen out of the defeat at Stamford Bridge, admitting that he had one eye on Stoke's match at home to Newcastle on Monday. "Not at all", Conte told Chelsea TV.

Defender Bruce was on commentary duty for BBC Sport on Saturday and he was very impressed by what he saw from Drinkwater as the midfielder made just his third Premier League start of the season.

It'd be hard for Conte not to be encouraged after he left Eden Hazard, Cesc Fabregas, Tiemoue Bakayoko, and Andreas Christensen out of his lineup and still clobbered a Premier League opponent.

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