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Conte wants to see out Chelsea contract but has bags packed

Antonio Conte was asked about his future at Chelsea following Tuesday's 1-1 draw against Barcelona in the Champions League.

NEWS
News 21 Feb 2018, 07:10 IST
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Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte

Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte intends to honour his contract at Stamford Bridge, though the Italian acknowledged "both parties need to be happy".

Conte – who oversaw Tuesday's 1-1 draw with Barcelona in the Champions League – guided Chelsea to Premier League glory in his first season in 2016-17 but the former Juventus and Italy boss has faced an uncertain future this term.

After an opening-day defeat to Burnley and back-to-back league losses against Bournemouth and Watford, Conte was reportedly on the verge of the sack amid links to Italy and Paris Saint-Germain, and unhappiness with Chelsea's transfer business.

Asked about his future after Lionel Messi cancelled out Willian's 62nd-minute opener in the first leg of the blockbuster last-16 tie, Conte told Mediaset Premium: "In 14 years, Chelsea have changed coach 10 times, so they do have a tendency to chop and change here.

Also read: 5 reasons why Lionel Messi is bigger than the Ballon d'Or

"The media also plays on this habit the moment there are negative results. They were already writing headlines about my dismissal after the opening game against Burnley.

"It's no problem for me, in fact I really like pressure. I just hope it doesn't affect the players.

"I said very clearly, I have a contract to 2019. I intend to respect it. After that, anything can happen in football. I am happy at Chelsea, but both parties need to be happy.

"In our line of work, we always have a bag packed. My intention is to remain here, but if something were to change, there would be several different scenarios opening up."

Chelsea, who travel to Barca for the return leg on March 14, face second-placed Manchester United at Old Trafford on Sunday.

Also read: Lionel Messi breaks Chelsea curse to pull Barcelona level - and Twitter explodes 

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