ANTONIO CONTE is on collision course with the Chelsea board after admitting they could fail to finish in the top four.
Conte saw his Chelsea side beaten 2-1 by Manchester United at Old Trafford after taking the lead.
Willian put the visitors in front before goals from Romelu Lukaku and Jesse Lingard sealed the win for United.
And Conte admits it is now a real possibility that Chelsea could miss out on a place in the Champions League next season.
“We have to be disappointed with the final result,” said Conte. “I think we had a good chance to get three points against a competitor for a place in the Champions League, but at the end we are talking about another defeat.
“In these types of situations [when you take the lead], you have to manage the game better and you must be able, with experience, with maturity to get three points.
“I don’t know if we will finish in the top four, but this [missing out] could be a possibility for sure. In this league to find a place in Champions League is not simple, it is not easy.
“In this country there is the only championship that you can find six teams that start to fight to win the title and for a place in the Champions League. This is the only country to have this competition and there is this risk we will stay out of the Champions League.”
Those words will send fear running through the corridors of power at Stamford Bridge with Conte’s future already in doubt.
Chelsea are expected to stick with the manager while results are going well after an upturn in form in recent weeks.
But defeat at Old Trafford will throw Conte’s position into more doubt.
It is understood Chelsea will stick with Conte while they are in the Champions League and well-positioned to be in next year’s.
But Conte’s latest comments will bring the kind of attention he doesn’t want from Roman Abramovich.
Chelsea face Manchester City next weekend before taking on Crystal Palace and then Barcelona in the Champions League second leg.