No excuses for Conte despite Chelsea's travel trouble
Chelsea have had little time to prepare for Saturday's trip to Liverpool but manager Antonio Conte, while frustrated, is making no excuses.
Antonio Conte is determined not to make excuses for Chelsea, despite feeling harshly treated by a Saturday fixture at Liverpool after travelling back from Azerbaijan.
Chelsea were 4-0 winners at Qarabag in the Champions League on Wednesday, but the Premier League champions ran into some problems on their return, as wind affected their attempts to land in London.
Conte said the incident contributed to a "strange week" and was frustrated that his team's preparation for the weekend has been affected - just as it was in September, when Chelsea lost at home to Manchester City just three days after winning at Atletico Madrid.
"I tried to speak with my club about this problem, to pay more attention for the future," he told a pre-match news conference. "This is not the first time.
"[It happened] also before a big game against Manchester City and now before Liverpool. [The Premier League] have to pay more attention to try to give the possibility to the team to recover and not to try to create problems for only one team.
"We must be ready. I don't like to find excuses. It's the same for my players. It won't be easy because we are facing a really strong team."
Conte says he has spoken to the club about the fixture schedule and he hopes in the future that teams will be given the same possibility to recover.— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) November 24, 2017
Eden Hazard sparkled in the victory in midweek and Conte believes the European stage gives his star man the opportunity to impress.
"Eden is a great player," he said. "Last season, he showed what it is to be a great player. He played in a fantastic way.
"This season, he has another opportunity to play in the Champions League and show that he can be a great player at the same level as the best. He is younger and has great room for improvement."
While Conte confirmed Victor Moses' return to the squad, he is keen to ensure his team selection is right and that there are no injuries at Anfield.
"We have to make the best decision game-by-game, to find the best solutions for the team and to give the right rest to my players," he said.
"Last time, [Alvaro] Morata played three games in a row and, after 20 minutes against Manchester City, he was injured. I have to pay attention in all situations. Sometimes I take a risk but it's my job and I like to do this."