Antonio Conte is not treating Sunday’s 3-0 defeat to Newcastle United as his final Premier League match in charge of Chelsea.
The Blues missed out on Champions League qualification with a miserable display at St James’ Park – though three points would have proved insufficient to earn a top-four spot with Liverpool winning at home against Brighton and Hove Albion.
Chelsea will try to finish the season on a high when they face Manchester United in the FA Cup final next weekend, and Conte, whose contract expires in June 2019, is not thinking about moving on.
Asked if the outing at Wembley would be his last with the club, Conte replied: “No, I don’t think so. In this season, for sure.
“I am committed to this club, this is important for me. Not speculation around me. It is important what the club thinks, not you.
“I have a contract and the club know very well the situation. After Saturday we go on vacation and then we will see next season.”
FULL-TIME Newcastle 3-0 Chelsea
— Premier League (@premierleague) May 13, 2018
The Italian was critical of his team’s “approach and desire” against Newcastle and refused to discuss the ramifications of missing out on a spot in the Champions League.
“I think I am the last person to speak about this,” said Conte. “You can ask the club about the damage.
“I am working with my players this season and it is not right to say something about this. Other people can judge our season.
“For sure we must change, if we play a game like this in the FA Cup we don’t have a chance. We have six days to change our approach and desire and will to fight.
“For this I am the first person to answer as I am the coach of this team and I am the first person to answer for this game.”
Having won Serie A three times in as many years for Juventus and triumphed in his debut Premier League season, Conte was hurt by failing to secure the top-flight title.
“I like to play to win. This is my first season that I didn’t win the title. Three with Juventus and one with Chelsea and when I start I have always won,” he said.
“There is a great disappointment for me as I like to play to win.”
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