Chelsea hopeful of sealing title at West Brom: Courtois

Rufina Vignone
Mag 12, 2017

Antonio Conte: "At this stage it was important to win and exploit Tottenham's defeat". We've got to put it right.

"We will give it our best tomorrow".

While Pulis will be hoping to prolong Chelsea's wait for a second title in three years, he admitted that today's visitors deserve to be champions.

"We are close and in football nothing is done until it's done. It's never comfortable and we need to be aware of that, but we're looking forward to getting the job done. we're in a great position now and if we were to throw it away we'd be devastated".

For sure now I'm a bit relaxed.

The immediate turnaround Conte has triggered at Stamford Bridge has both surprised and impressed many in England given it is the Italian's first season, and the manager himself admits winning the title would be "a big step" in his personal career.

"We've had 36 games with two to go and it's been a tough season", added the manager.

Even if they slip up against the Baggies, Chelsea will still be overwhelming favourites given they need just three points from their final three league games this season to take the title. It won't be easy. We have to rest well and prepare for West Brom.

The Blues have had a resurgent season under their new boss after finishing tenth a year ago and Conte believes that matches against Arsenal, Manchester United and Manchester City were pivotal to his side's challenge, especially the 3-0 defeat to the Gunners in September.

"This game was very important for us after the defeat for Tottenham", Conte told Sky Sports.

He said: "There are three points riding on it for them and us".

"It's important to win it ourselves, we have the possibility to win it and not wait for the Tottenham result".

"Honestly for sure this is a big step because now there are three games".

Elsewhere, Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool remain third despite only managing a draw at home to Southampton, and they are now just a point clear of Manchester City after they dispatched Sam Allardyce's Crystal Palace 5-0 at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. In 36 games, Boro have won only five times, most recently at home to Sunderland last month. We must focus and prepare well for this game.

"Friday we have the first chance, but we must know to play against West Brom is not easy".

Assists for Diego Costa and Nemanja Matic goals during the 3-0 win over Middlesbrough punctuated his masterful display, but it was only the absence of consensus player of the season N'Golo Kante that afforded Fabregas his opportunity. This season we started with a lot of problems. When you work very hard, it's normal to suffer. And now he's playing in every game. "I think it's fantastic". Then through hard work, he improved a lot.

Will Cesc play such a key role on Friday? I'm pleased for him. It's been one of the curiosities of the Blues' league campaign that they've rarely found space for the 30-year-old Spaniard in their starting XI but on the few times they have he's never disappointed. "Obviously we've come up short". I've left a very silent dressing room with everyone, staff and players, absolutely gutted.

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