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3 Things We Learnt From Chelsea’s Pre-season Game

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte

Antonio Conte tenure as Chelsea Manager began with a defeat as the Blues suffered a 2-0 defeat against Rapid Vienna. An early goal from teenage Brazilian striker Joelinton gave Rapid a lead as the Austrian giants marked the opening of their brand new 28,000-seater Allianz Stadion with a famous victory. The victory was secured when Tomi poked in from close range with eight minutes to go after Begovic and Ivanovic failed to adequately clear their lines. Chelsea announced the signing of N’Gole Kante from Leicester City minutes before the kick-off. Rapid looked more prepared for the match given that this was there 6 pre-season friendly.

Chelsea however have just started their pre-season training at Cobham under Conte and were also without the likes of Eden hazard, Cesc Fabregas and many others who are enjoying  an extended break after their Euro 2016 and Copa America Centenario exertions. The whole looked out of sorts especially midfielder Jon Obi Mikel. Chelsea will now travel to their training camp in the Austrian town of Velden on Sunday ahead of their second preseason friendly against WAC RZ Pellets on July 20. Here are the 3 things we learnt from the match.

Ivanovic Still Hasn’t Recovered

Ivanovic was one player who struggled the most last season. In the opening weeks his torment at the feet of a series of Premier League wingers was alarmingly high. Many fans were urging Mourinho to drop the defender up until his sacking. Ivanovic struggled to contain Philipp Schobesberger whenever Rapid winger decided to run at him. The Serbian was one of the stalwarts of the Chelsea team that won the title back in 2014-2015. However at 32 years of age and struggling for form, it might be time up for him at Stamford Bridge.

Formation

There are has been a lot of talk regarding what formation Antonio Conte is going to play with coming into Chelsea friendly game of the pre-season. After watching his Italy side impress at Euro 2016 whilst deploying three at the back, there have been suggestions Antonio Conte would look to implement the same tactic at Chelsea. However the Italian manager decided to go with a four man defence suggesting that he might stick with a back four for his first season in England.

Costa Isn’t Effective Alone Upfront

Deigo Costa is one player who always lives up to his image. There were several instances over the course of the 90 minutes against Rapid Vienna where Costa cut a frustrated figure up front for Chelsea. He always likes being in the thick off thins and the frustration also starts to come in when things aren’t going right. Costa definitely needs a partner upfront, who provides him with an outlet for his passing and allows him space to run into. The signing of Marseille forward Michy Batshuayi could be massive for both Chelsea and Costa this season.