Instant Reactions - Chelsea v Southampton (16/12/17)
Following today's clash between Chelsea and Southampton, here are the instant reactions from both managers.
Chelsea hosted Southampton at Stamford Bridge on Saturday December 16, with the hosts taking a one nil victory following a Marcos Alonso strike in first half stoppage time.
The three points see Chelsea draw level on points with second placed Manchester United, but Southampton's winless streak grows to five games now as they sit in 12th place in the Premier League table.
Courtois, Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill, Moses (Zappacosta 82), Kante, Bakayoko, Alonso, Willian, Pedro (Fabregas 68), Hazard (Morata 73).
Caballero, Rudiger, Drinkwater, Batshuayi.
Forster, Stephens, Yoshida, Hoedt, Soares (Lemina 17), Romeu, Hojbjerg (Boufal 72), Bertrand, Ward-Prowse, Redmond, Gabbiadini (Austin 61).
Davis, Tadic, McCarthy, van Dijk.
Speaking to the BBC's cameras a short time after match day referee Roger East blew the final whistle, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte explained.
'When you do not score the second goal, you have to suffer. You are afraid at every corner and free-kick and the opponent has the chance to draw. We dominated the game, shooting 24 times and hitting the post, and we needed to score the second goal to be relaxed. If you shoot only twice and score two goals, you must be worried. We had lots of shots but we must be more accurate in our finishing. In the past 10 games, we have won eight, drawn one and lost one. This is our run, you have to consider the last 10 games, not just two. It shows we are doing our job.'
Speaking more about the run Chelsea are on, he added.
'Someone is forgetting this run, because there is a team winning every game. If someone asks me if I want to sign for this in the next 10 games, I'm ready.'
Southampton manager Mauricio Pellegrino in his comparative interview explained.
'It was a difficult game - especially in the second half we suffered a lot. When you play with five defenders, you do not have a lot of people in the middle and they managed the ball more. The quality of the goal was good, but maybe we can learn more from there. It is not easy to have many chances against Chelsea. We had three clear chances but could not score. The team is training well, the mentality is good and we are fighting. We are creating a good atmosphere to try and bounce back from this situation. Football is tight but we have another opportunity next Saturday.'
With van Dijk dropping to the bench, that gave rise to questions about January once again.
'I can't control the market. I'm not the owner of the player. I can have my opinion and this I have given to the technical director, to the chairman. After, the board can decide altogether which is the best for the team.'