Cole: Conte ‘reinvented’ Chelsea

Former Chelsea midfielder Joe Cole has praised the efforts of manager Antonio Conte, claiming that the Italian reinvented the club.

Conte took over at Stamford Bridge ahead of the 2016/17 season, following a disastrous Premier League campaign that saw the defending champions finish in 10th position.

The former Juventus boss quickly got the team back in shape and they started dominating the top flight after switching to a 3-4-3 formation. The Blues cruised to the Premier League title in the end, finishing seven points clear of Tottenham.

"I went back in December and you could tell that they had the feel of champions, the place was very relaxed and calm. You know the quality's there so you just look to get a feel around the place," Cole told Goal.

"I went to watch them twice and they got the job done in both games, which shows what a team they were. They went on to win it comfortably and Conte put together a really top side.

"I spoke to the lads [about Conte]. I sadly didn't get the chance to speak with him because he is a busy man, but I was just looking at what he did from afar. I thought they were such a well-drilled team."

He added: "It was the first time Chelsea had reinvented themselves for many years. I think Conte has come in with that system, and it seems to be the system that’s in vogue at the moment. They are the best at it Chelsea, they know it inside out and he has got the players to buy into it. 

"They were so well-drilled [in the system] and that’s what got them over the line in the end."