Chelsea v Burnley Preview - Conte's men begin Title defence


The Blues had captain Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas sent off at Stamford Bridge this afternoon as they fell to a shock 3-2 defeat at the hands of Burnley.

With Pedro, Eden Hazard and new signing Tiemoue Bakayoko injured, Victor Moses suspended and Morata not fit enough to start, Chelsea handed debuts to Antonio Rudiger and 20-year-old winger Jeremie Boga.

But they won just once on the road last season, and will be outmatched by both the talent of Chelsea and the atmosphere of Stamford Bridge.

However, Chelsea's odd transfer business this summer should have no effect on the match this weekend.

Conte has said it was decided in January, with Costa and his agent, Jorge Mendes, that the Brazil-born Spain global signed from Atletico Madrid in July 2014 would leave Stamford Bridge this summer.

New Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata says he is already being criticised despite moving to London only weeks ago. It's something that motivates me and makes me work harder every day, to be an extra hour each day in the training ground.

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When asked if Pawson got the big decisions right, Conte replied: "Mmm.I prefer to not comment on the referee's decision and performance". To be fair to the bookies, there is a trend developing, with Leicester's Claudio Ranieri suffering the same fate last season. "I have always answered this question, not only once but twice, three times".

While there has been a lot of discussion regarding how the Blues will start the season, I believe we will see a largely unchanged lineup to the XI that played in the Community Shield against Arsenal last weekend. My only task is to be focused on the pitch.

"I think the top four will be Manchester United, Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal".

Marcos Alonso's long-range drive was tipped over by Tom Heaton as Chelsea registered its first shot on target early in the second half, while Morata came on to replace the ineffective Michy Batshuayi in attack.

Burnley, on the other hand, knows that they are not favorites to win.

Conte said the Spain striker needs time to bed in, while simultaneously outlining the importance of the leading forward in his team.