Photograph: Tom Jenkins for the Guardian

Antonio Conte led Chelsea to the Premier League title last season but Chelsea’s dismal defence of their league title saw them finish fifth this campaign – 30 points adrift of champions Manchester City – to miss out on Champions League qualification.

Pressure has been on Chelsea for their bad form this season, but ended up the campaign by lifting the FA Cup trophy on Saturday having defeated Manchester United 1-0.

Chelsea captain Gary Cahill believes winning the FA Cup has helped save Chelsea’s dismal season.

“I felt the pressure before the game,” said Cahill after Eden Hazard sealed victory with a first-half penalty.

“I felt that we really had to win this game to save the season and, by that, I mean that it is a massive success.

“It was almost like the whole season built up to this day where we had to try to rescue and produce.

“That goes for the manager, that goes for the staff and everyone who works behind the scenes and for all the players.

“It is the FA Cup and we have won a trophy this season which a number of teams have not managed to do and it is very difficult to do.

About the Author

Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.