Conte: Chelsea only a great team on paper

The Blues were well-beaten by Arsenal in Saturday’s derby, with the Italian boss criticising the attitude shown by his side but he refused to single out Gary Cahill for his display

Antonio Conte challenged his Chelsea players to prove their worth after questioning their attitude in the 3-0 derby defeat at Arsenal.

Chelsea remain without a Premier League win in September and conceded all three goals before half-time, with Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Mesut Ozil on target for the Gunners.

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And while Conterefused to single out individuals flaws, the Blues boss was adamant that his side can only be considered great on paper given their recent performances.

“I think that from the first minute we didn’t have the right attitude and I think that we played against a good team, who were well organised in the tactical and physical aspect,” he told BT Sport.

“After today we are thinking that we must work a lot. Now we are a great team only on paper.

“I think that it is always a team problem, not individual players. When nothing works it is very difficult for a player to play a good game.”

On Gary Cahill’s woefully judged backpass that led to the first goal, he added: “I don’t want to speak about the mistake because it is not right for the player. We win as a team and we lose as a team.

“We know that we must work a lot and if someone thinks now this team is ready to fight… we must wait to be a great team not only on paper but on the pitch. This is important.”

The loss leaves Chelsea eight points behind early pacesetters Manchester City but Conte feels comparisons with other sides are unhelpful to him at present.

He added: “Manchester City started the season very well. They are playing very well.

“But I think also that everyone must look in our house for the problem.

“It is important now to look in our house and not in the other houses.”

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