Antonio Conte: Chelsea must be ready to 'fight' in FA Cup semi-final

Media playback is not supported on this device

Burnley 1-2 Chelsea: Playing two strikers is a really good option - Antonio Conte

Manager Antonio Conte says Chelsea must "be ready to fight" in their FA Cup semi-final against Southampton.

The Blues, Premier League champions last season, face third-bottom Saints at 15:00 BST at Wembley on Sunday.

Conte, whose side beat Burnley 2-1 at Turf Moor in the league on Thursday, said he is not "listening to those who say Chelsea are already in the final".

"It won't be easy," said Conte, who hinted that he may start with two strikers in the semi.

"Five days ago we were 2-0 down at Southampton, but I saw a fantastic spirit at Burnley. We must continue this way."

Against Burnley, Conte played two strikers - Alvaro Morata and Olivier Giroud - for the first time since taking over at Chelsea in 2016.

"In the past it was very difficult for me to try this option with the two strikers," he said.

"But they showed a great link and a great combination, and at the same time they worked very hard for the team.

"Our strikers created a lot of difficulties for the central defenders and we surprised Burnley.

"To see Giroud and Morata play this way gives me satisfaction. It's an option, for Sunday or maybe for the future."

Spaniard Morata, who missed a one-on-one opportunity with goalkeeper Nick Pope, showed his frustration after being replaced by Eden Hazard 19 minutes from time.

"Alvaro must be angry," said Conte. "He had a chance to score and if you score you change the confidence.

"I thought he was angry he was substituted because of this miss but I am very pleased with him. I thought it was better to put fresh strength on with Hazard."

Chelsea lost 2-1 to Arsenal in the FA Cup final last season.

"A second final in a row would be great for our fans," said Conte.

"It's not my task to judge the season. I have to work and try to transfer my enthusiasm to the team.

"Sometimes I am good, sometimes I am not so good."

Top Stories