Conte: Really proud

As Chelsea host Newcastle United in the fourth round of the FA Cup this afternoon, Antonio Conte discusses the pride he takes in coaching his players, coping with a busy fixture list and the energy he puts into preparing the squad for each match.

The visit of the Magpies will be our eighth game of the year so far and Conte admits that such a gruelling schedule is tiring, but the Italian enjoys the test posed by every opponent in this country.

‘The way that I do my job, you lose a lot of energy because I am not a manager who stays in his office, decides a formation and you have your staff to work on the pitch.

‘I’m a coach and my life is on the pitch to try to improve the players and try to put my idea of football on the pitch. In this way you spend a lot of energy, to prepare the game every two days.

‘When I was the coach of the Italian national team, I had the opportunity to come to a fantastic country, in one of the best leagues – maybe the best league – around the world, to face this type of situation and I enjoy it a lot.

‘If you want an easy life, you make an easy decision, and I think to come and be a coach in England, in this league, you don’t have an easy life because in every game you need to fight a lot. If you play in the FA Cup or you play in the league, it’s always the same – you have to fight a lot.

‘For sure, I am enjoying a lot my time here. I am really proud of what I have achieved, because to work in this way, you must be really proud for what we are doing – me and the players.’