CHELSEA boss Antonio Conte might be feeling slightly tender today.
But no, Antonio Conte didn’t over-celebrate Christmas!
In fact, during a Chelsea training session yesterday at the club’s Cobham base, the 47-year-old seemed to show his age.
The Daily Mail claim the Italian tactician joined his players for a run, but pulled up shortly afterwards, clutching his calf.
However, the report indicates there was nothing serious.
One of his former charges, Fabio Quagliarella, described Conte’s training sessions as ‘back-breaking’.
He said: “With Conte, it was back-breaking both in training and in games.
“The intensity was so high, and you could see that also in our games. He is phenomenal in the way he prepares you tactically.”
But Conte’s intense approach has paid dividends, with the Blues now 12 games unbeaten in the Premier League.
They could extend that to 13 with a win over Stoke tomorrow (3pm).
Jamie Redknapp: This Chelsea player lives in Eden Hazard’s shadow, he deserves more credit
Jamie Redknapp believes Pedro Rodriguez doesn’t get enough credit because the Chelsea winger lives in the shadow of Eden Hazard.
The Spain international has made an excellent start to his second season in the Premier League after the World Cup winner struggled in his first campaign at Stamford Bridge.
Pedro scored either side of half-time in Chelsea’s 3-0 victory over Bournemouth in west London on Boxing Day to help the Premier League leaders seal three points in the title race.
Hazard scored a second-half penalty after the 2015 PFA player of the year was brought down inside the Chelsea penalty area after a meandering run.
The former Barcelona winger has produced some excellent performances under Antonio Conte this term as the new Chelsea boss continues to get the best out of the Spanish star.
And ex-Liverpool captain Redknapp believes Pedro deserves more credit for his contribution to Chelsea’s title bid this season.
“Pedro is often in the shadow of Eden Hazard so doesn’t get the credit he deserves,” Redknapp told The Daily Mail.
“We are now seeing the player who, with Lionel Messi and David Villa, formed the lethal MVP forward line at Barcelona – and his goal on Monday was superb.”
Pedro has scored four goals and has made five assists in 16 Premier League appearances this term.
Arsene Wenger: Chelsea breaking my record would be fantastic and this is why
ARSENE WENGER hopes Chelsea break the record for most consecutive wins in the Premier League.
The Blues have won their last 12 matches but Arsenal hold the record when they recorded 13 victories on the spin in the 2001/02 season.
And Wenger believes Chelsea will deserve it if they manage the feat after an impressive turnaround under Antonio Conte.
He said: “If they do it its fantastic because nobody expected that at the start.
“Since they change they’re system they have confidence and that plays a big part.
“If they beat it we will have to say well done.
“They have addressed their problems well. You have to praise Conte.”
And on the Blues sitting six points clear of Liverpool and nine of the Gunners at the top of the table Wenger admitted they were in a good position.
He added: “It’s theirs to lose as we say in this country.”
Arsenal return to Premier League action on New Year’s Day when they welcome Crystal Palace to the Emirates.
Chelsea host Stoke 24 hours earlier as they look to extend their lead at the top of the table.