Conte excludes Chelsea from title race

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The Blues appear to be well out of the Premier League title race after defeat to West Ham on Saturday, which was scheduled as the early kick-off despite their midweek tie against Atletico Madrid.

During his post-match interview, a dismayed Antonio Conte said "This is the fourth defeat in 16 games". We started with a defeat at home to Burnley.

His downcast appearance was in stark contrast to his West Ham counterpart David Moyes, who saw his players succeed in holding onto a 1-0 lead unlike last weekend when they allowed Manchester City to come back and win 2-1. "After 16 games, if you lose four, it means you never started this race", said Conte. It's normal when you play every three days. "When you shoot 19 times in a game it means you attacked, but we can do better". "When you have that it's impossible to think you are in the race, my experience tells me if you want to stay in the race in the first part of the season you can lose once or twice", Conte admitted. "[At the start of the season] I said it well be very tough, very hard".

There is of course a valid argument that Chelsea's manager should have made more changes from the team that played during the week, although changing a winning team and rotating too heavily also comes with its own risks. When you have this task, it is impossible to think that you are in the title race.

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"Pedro has different characteristics to Bakayoko, he's better one-versus-one and he has good technical qualities".

"The final decision [on transfers] is the club". To lose a phsyical player in this game was not important.

"I don't want to speak about this", he said, "we have just started December and there is one month before January. I can give my opinion but the last decision is of the club, and it is right to do this".

Bakayoko has had some good performances at Chelsea.

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