Coach of Chelsea, Antonio Conte has taken time to explain the reasons behind leaving Nigerian international Victor Moses on the bench in their 0-1 loss to Manchester City at Stamford Bridge over the weekend.
Conte said his decision was not a tactical choice but a simple objective of giving Moses a much needed rest out of a congested week.
“To play three games in seven days is not simple, above all for our wing-backs,” Conte began in a post match press conference.
“Moses played two whole games against Stoke City and Atletico, Marcos Alonso played one and a half games, because against Stoke I changed him 10 minutes after half time.
Then you have to try not to put your players in difficulty, and not to risk this type of player, because Moses for us is an important player, and to play three games in only seven days, is a big risk.
Super Eagles coach Gernot Rohr will definitely nod in agreement with Conte
as he would be having a fresh Moses for the all important World Cup qualifier clash against Zambia next Saturday.
Conte also acknowledged the fact that Manchester City are a great team.
“I think you know very well that Manchester City is a really good team. We have to try to send out the best formation in this type of game. It’s very difficult to put young players into this type of game.
Also because when there are these massive games you have to try to make the best decisions. To try to send out the best players to play this game.
The players were the same players that played against Atletico Madrid and
apart from that, Moses. We also put in Antonio Rudiger.”
Conte expressed his pride in his players and their work. “I am proud to be the coach of these players. I see the commitment every
day, but for sure to defend the title is very difficult as it is very difficult for every team in this league.
To defend – it is very difficult to win two titles in a row. Our motivation has to be high in every competition, to do the best in every game.
Then sometimes you must accept and must understand, it will not always go according to plan.