Veteran defender Gary Cahill has hailed the renewed sense of excitement that new manager Antonio Conte has brought to Stamford Bridge.
The Italian coach took over as the Chelsea boss at the start of the 2016/17 campaign and is expected to mould the former Premier League champions into a side that will again challenge for the title.
Conte’s famously passionate sideline behaviour was on display during the Blues’ victory over West Ham on Monday. The 47-year-old exploded with emotion when Diego Costa scored the 89th minute winner and even shared his joy with a lucky section of the Chelsea home supporters.
It is this enthusiasm, amongst other things, which the defender says will inspire the side to be at their best this season.
“He’s added spirit, he’s added organisation and a lot of discipline,” Cahill told the club’s official website.
“Players know exactly what their role should be at each individual time they’re on the pitch,” he continued. “He wants to win. You can see how animated he is on the side of the pitch and he’s like that when we’re working.
“He wants to win, just like the rest of us.”
Conte’s pre-season regime also played a role in the Hammers win according to the central defender.
“He’s added fitness, against West Ham I felt really sharp and really fit, it’s one of the toughest pre-seasons I’ve done,” Cahill added.
“It’s not enjoyable when you’re doing it but you reap the rewards and I felt really strong in the game.”