5 facts about Chelsea manager Antonio Conte.
Antonio Conte won three consecutive Serie A titles with Juventus
Already a big name from his successful stint in charge of Juventus, many fans will have heard of Conte, but here’s our five-point factfile to get you fully up to speed…
1. He’s like Mourinho
A good start – Conte has several times been compared with probably Chelsea’s greatest and most-loved manager, Jose Mourinho.
Antonio Conte shares Jose Mourinho’s fighting qualities.
The 46-year-old has a habit of deploying defensive tactics and has earned a reputation for creating an us-against-them mentality with his players.
It may not have worked for Mourinho towards the end of his time at Stamford Bridge, but it’s served Conte well in his career so far, just as it did with the Portuguese tactician for many years.
2. He delivers trophies
Both as a player and as a manager, Conte has won trophies galore, and that should come in handy in the high-pressure environment of Stamford Bridge.
See below for his full list of honours with Juventus:
Conte Juventus career honours
As a player:
Serie A – 1994/95, 1996/97, 1997/98, 2001/02, 2002/03
Champions League – 1995/96
Uefa Cup – 1992/93
Coppa Italia – 1994/95
Uefa Super Cup – 1996
Intercontinental Cup – 1996
Uefa Intertoto Cup – 1999
Supercoppa Italiana – 1995, 1997, 2002, 2003
As a manager:
Serie A – 2011/12, 2012/13, 2013/14
Supercoppa Italiana – 2012, 2013
Away from Juve, he’s also won Serie B with Bari in 2008/09 and was a runner-up for Italy in the 1994 World Cup and Euro 2000.
3. He’s a record breaker
Conte is the proud holder of some impressive records.
First, he guided Juventus to a whole league season unbeaten in his first year in charge, as they won the 2011/12 title.
In doing so, they became the first Italian ‘Invincibles’ since AC Milan in 1991/92.
Antonio Conte with one of his three scudetti as Juventus manager.
Conte followed this up with two more league title wins, and his third was arguably his most impressive as his Juve side broke records for most wins in a season (33), most points (102), whilst also winning all 19 of their home games.
In doing so, the Italian also became the first manager in Serie A history to win the Manager of the Year award for three seasons running.
4. He’s fond of 3-5-2
It’s not the most popular formation in England, but Conte is a big fan of 3-5-2 and used it to great success in his time in charge of Juventus.
It remains to be seen if this could possibly work at Chelsea, though there are some players who look like they’d fit the system nicely.
Branislav Ivanovic is an attack-minded defender who could do well as a wing-back, as could youngster Baba Rahman.
Equally, Ivanovic could be used as a centre-back in a back three.
In midfield, Cesc Fabregas looked tired last season, but could enjoy an Andrea Pirlo-like renaissance if Conte gives him more support in midfield.
5. He’s learning English
One more possible cause for concern for Chelsea fans – Conte is reportedly having to learn English for the role at Stamford Bridge.
Antonio Conte set for first venture out of Italy
This will ring some unpleasant bells with Blues fans, as Felipe Scolari notably struggled to truly communicate his ideas to his players during his brief spell at the club.
In general, this points to Conte’s lack of experience in being outside his comfort zone – he has spent his entire playing career and managerial career with Italian teams so far.
Perhaps some risks involved, but overall the Italy boss has plenty to offer if he does end up as Chelsea’s next manager.