Conte's Chelsea hit 23-year low in Watford humbling

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Catherine Ivill
The Blues boss finds himself on the brink following a 4-1 defeat at Vicarage Road, which saw the Premier League champions crumble with 10 men

Chelsea’s humbling 4-1 defeat at Watford has seen them hit a 23-year low in the Premier League under Antonio Conte.

The Blues boss made the trip to Vicarage Road with his ongoing presence at Stamford Bridge already being called into question .

A 3-0 defeat to Bournemouth on home soil had seen uncomfortable questions asked of the Italian amid reports of dressing room unrest.

Conte would have been hoping for a positive response against Watford, but he got another abject display.

Chelsea’s cause was delivered a damaging blow inside half-an-hour when Tiemoue Bakayoko was sent off.

There was brief hope when Eden Hazard cancelled out Troy Deeney’s penalty eight minutes from time, but a late collapse saw the visitors leave with their tail between their legs .

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Not since 1995 have the Blues suffered such crushing defeats in back-to-back top-flight fixtures, with the wheels having fallen off in some style for the reigning champions.

Ill-discipline has been a problem for Chelsea this season, with Bakayoko the latest to have seen red in a campaign of far too many cards.

While the Blues now face another testing period of reflection, with Conte’s position under serious threat, Watford can bask in the claiming of a prized scalp.

The Hornets do not have the best of records against Chelsea, but they are now revelling in a first victory over the west London giants in 14 attempts — with that sequence stretching back to a 1-0 win in September 1999. 

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