The crop of players he currently has matches up favourably with those at Juventus when he took over there in 2011. Then the Serie A side who had underachieved the previous two seasons with seventh-place finishes became champions straightaway. However for Chelsea to rise up from a past year far below expectations, Conte emphasises ability alone will not be enough.
‘The talent there is now in our team at Chelsea is for sure more than Juventus in my first season,’ Conte said, ‘but also we must understand that with the talent only, you do not win.
‘You must add running, intensity and sacrifice. You must want to win the ball when you lose it. All of these. And we are working very hard on this. It is important to understand and find very quickly the right way but I am confident about this because I have a group of players with a great commitment and they work hard.
‘I can’t compare it with the first season with Juventus because there are many different things. The only things that are the same is the great work, the hard work. We can only improve with that.’
Immediately after last weekend’s defeat at Arsenal, Conte said he will continue to consider different formations as he seeks the winning formula, and he explains further that he is not wedded to one particular system.
‘I started my career with 4-2-4 and I won two promotions with Bari and Siena. I played this type of system with Juventus at the start but then changed because it is important for a coach to understand the type of players you have in your squad. Then you decide the best way for the team.
‘At the moment we must solve a big problem, conceding two or three goals every game which is unusual. We are working to solve this problem and also to improve in our attacking situations, and to stay compact, and to win the ball when we lose it. We are working on many principles but it is not easy when you start with a new team, but I think we are improving. Slowly, but we are improving.’