Chelsea are sure to be crowned champions of the English Premier League by the end of April and the person who should get the most credit for this achievement is Antonio Conte.
The Italian has worked wonders this season and his winning run was as impressive as the list of betting offers at LatestBettingSites.co.uk. He has worked wonders with the same squad that Mourinho had last season and in this article we will try to see how he did that.
Change of Formation
The most important of all the changes that Conte made this season is probably the switch from the 4-2-3-1 formation that Mourinho and Hiddink used last season to the now revolutionary 3-4-2-1.
This formation is very flexible and it allows Conte to switch from 5-4-1 when defending to 3-4-3 when attacking. However, at the start of the season it never seemed that Conte was going to turn to this untried formation.
In honesty, Chelsea had a good start of the season and in their first games they got good results even though they struggled to play well and their first three wins were more the result of not giving up than playing dominating football. However, Conte knew that if Chelsea continued playing that way they were unlikely to finish the season as title winners and were much more likely to compete for a Top 4 spot.
What followed was a stroke genius. It all started with the heavy defeat at Arsenal away and Liverpool at home. These two defeats convinced Conte that something was very wrong with his side and he decided to change the formation as the first step in trying to find a solution.
He switched to the 3-4-2-1 at the end of the match against Arsenal and he liked what he saw. The next game, which was against Hull City away, Chelsea started the match with the new formation. What followed was the joint longest winning run in the history of the EPL and Chelsea haven’t looked back since.
Chelsea’s renaissance coincided with the return to form of Costa, Hazard, Pedro and Matic. All of these players underperformed under Jose Mourinho last year and some of them were even singled out as traitors to the Chelsea cause.
However, under Conte they all improved significantly and took Chelsea’s game to a new level. They all now command high market prices and clubs around Europe are trying to poach them away from Chelsea.
Kante and David Luiz
The Frenchman and the Brazilian were arguably the best two purchases of the summer transfer market and for good reason. It was said that Kante was the main reason behind Leicester’s title win last season. Based on his performances for Chelsea and Leicester’s poor form in the EPL everyone can see why this claim is true.
Unlike Kante, there were doubts regarding the acquisition of David Luiz. However, under Conte’s guidance, the defender became a leader of Chelsea’s last line of defence and proved everyone wrong by being one of the best EPL performers this season.