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Antonio Conte blames fatigue as Chelsea stumble against Leicester City

Conte blames fatigue as Chelsea stumble against Leicester

13/01/2018 at 18:06Updated 13/01/2018 at 19:14

Antonio Conte has blamed fatigue for his side's 0-0 draw against Leicester City.

Gary Cahill was withdrawn with a hamstring injury, and Cesc Fabregas and Eden Hazard were brought off early in the second half.

Asked if the latter two come off with fatigue, Conte said, "Yes. I saw them very, very tired. It was simple."

Conte blamed tiredness on their busy fixture schedule, that includes the FA Cup and their involvement in the Carabao Cup semi-final.

Gary Cahill leaves the pictch injured in Chelsea's match against Leicester

Gary Cahill leaves the pictch injured in Chelsea's match against LeicesterGetty Images

"I think honestly, not to find excuses or alibis, today we paid a lot for the effort from Arsenal.

"To play Wednesday night and then today against a really good team, a team in really good physical form like Leicester, after only two and a half days [is difficult].

"We played with almost the same players as against Arsenal. My plan was to play with one team in the FA Cup, and then these two games with almost the same players. But I think, today, I saw a lot of players very tired. We suffered a lot in the first half and at the start of the second half.

"Then when I decided to put fresh energy on, the game changed. We tried to create chances, to score, and we are not suffering defensively. We tried to win the game. But at the end I think the result was fair."

Chelsea are in third, level on points with Manchester United with 47, but they have played one more game than Jose Mourinho's side.

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