What better way can a team shut up the mouths of its critics than the winning title? That’s exactly what Chelsea have done this season. Antonio Conte’s soldiers came, saw and conquered. The sweetness about it is that they did so in swashbuckling style by deferring the odds as no one gave them a chance. Atlas, Chelsea are the new Champions of England.
Here are 3 wonders of Chelsea’s season that propelled our title triumph:
THE CHANGE IN TACTICAL SYSTEM AND STYLE:
The need for a change is often prompted by issues of a failed system. Conte’s Midas touch was most evident in his switch to a three-man defensive formation following defeats against Liverpool and Arsenal early in the season. That was a painful experience for Chelsea as we were blown apart by the twin defeats to both rivals in September last year. Conte rolled out the 3-4-3 formation against Arsenal at half time and from then on Chelsea never looked back. Despite wobbles against Palace and United, Chelsea still showed great mental fortitude to wrap up the title. The team recorded a 13 game unbeaten run which was significant in our title quest. Conte summed up Chelsea’s desire to change things with this assertion:
“That decision changed our season. We had to change and find a new suit for our team. In my mind there was this option to play a 3-4-3 because I knew I had the players to do that,” Conte said.
Great job Antonio!
THE CONTE PASSION AND FOSTERED TEAM SPIRIT:
A dispirited first game against Swansea last season under Jose Mourinho was the turning point of Chelsea’s disastrous season which ended the club in a 10th place finish. The mutiny of the last season which led to Jose’s exit needed to be settled, and so fast. Here is what Conte had to say about it:
“Every game I feel like I have played with my players. I show my passion and my will, my desire to stay with my players in every moment of the game. This is me,” Conte said.
“In the present, in the past, I stay with my players in positive and negative situations. We won this title together.”
Surely a manager who loves to motivate his players like Conte does will achieve great things. In a bid to quell the fire of impalpable discord, the fiery Italian healed deep divisions and mistrust among the squad from the disastrous previous season by throwing a barbecue party at the club’s plush Surrey training ground. Conte invited wives and families and even laid on a bouncy castle and a kids’ football match in a bid to win over his players. That was a strategic move for a newbie in English Football and surely it has paid off.
A Blues source said: “Everyone is wondering how Conte has got Chelsea singing from the same song sheet so quickly when, for much of last season, the whole place seemed so divided.
“When Jose Mourinho left, the fans were at some of the players’ throats and there were accusations of disloyalty and severe frustration.
“Guus Hiddink did his best to mend it but was always a temporary fix. Antonio healed the wounds and got Chelsea back to where they belong as Champions of England”.
How on earth did Conte convert marauding winger, Victor Moses into right wingback? How did he redirect the battling negative attitude of Diego Costa into a positive one? How was he able to turn David Luiz from a joke of a defender into a class act? How was he able to revive the form of Hazard, Pedro, Cahill, Matic and the rest of the Chelsea squad, and be able to keep them all happy? The decisions taken on every single member of his team is applaudable and has so much led to this season’s success.
Let’s keep the blue flag flying high as we celebrate our title triumph. The sky is TRUEBLUE. CHEERS!