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Conte: Top players performing

Antonio Conte believes one of the main reasons his side are performing so well is because every player is putting the needs of the group above personal glory.

Having drawn at Burnley in our previous Premier League encounter, the Blues got back to winning ways on Saturday against Swansea, equalling a club record of 12 consecutive home victories in the process.

‘These are great achievements for the team, players and also for me,’ Conte said. ‘The record is fantastic.

‘It's important for us to continue this way. It means you are doing very well and probably you stay on top of the table. Now it's important to try to improve these types of situations and records.’

Cesc Fabregas, back in the starting 11, was a key performer against Paul Clement’s side, opening the scoring in the first half before teeing up Pedro to fire us back in front after Swansea had equalised.

Conte explained why he chose to play Fabregas, rather than Nemanja Matic, alongside N’Golo Kante in midfield.

‘Swansea play very, very compact,’ he said. ‘Probably in this game it was difficult to find the space to play between the lines. I'm very happy, for Cesc, but also Nemanja. When I called him to play off the bench, he played really well. N'Golo is playing fantastic. This is why we are top of the league - all my players are playing very, very well.

‘For me, it's always difficult to make these decisions. But I have to do this. Sometimes I make a mistake, but I try to do the best for the team because I want to win.

‘Against Swansea I decided to start with Cesc, but don't forget Matic is playing a fantastic championship, Kante the same. We must continue in this way. Our target is more important than a single player.’

The Blues boss went on to praise the attitude of Fabregas and one other player who hasn’t started as many matches as he would have liked of late.

‘He showed a great professional attitude,’ added Conte. ‘I'm pleased to have these opportunities to work with these types of players. We are talking about champions, not medium players, but top players. When you have in your squad these type of player that you put in the team and he does not think of himself, but the team, it's great.

‘Another example is Willian. Pedro is playing but Willian's behaviour is always the same and when you have this type of player, you must go in your house to sleep (well).’

Of course, no player is happy if their involvement is limited, but Conte says he hasn’t had any members of the squad coming to him to ask why they are not featuring.

‘No, but usually, I don't like it when I have this type of conversation,’ said the Italian. ‘But in the season I like to have lots of conversation with players - for me this is the first season, I'm knowing these players and they are learning to know me also.

‘For this reason it's important to have a good conversation with all the players. To try always to be honest. I think that the right way is to be honest. I prefer to tell always a better truth than a good lie.

‘When one player wants to have an explanation about my choices, my door is always open and the reply is always the same - I want to win and I try always, in every game, to make the best decision.’

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