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Chelsea legend suggests Conte can have few complaints if he's sacked

10:29 IST 19/05/2018
Antonio Conte Chelsea
The Blues failed to qualify for the Champions League this season, and Dennis Wise believes the manager may well pay for it with his job

Antonio Conte has fallen short of expectations at Chelsea, and may lose his job as a result, according to former Blues midfielder Dennis Wise.

The club will contest the FA Cup final against Manchester United on Saturday, but disappointed in the Premier League, as they failed to mount any sort of defence of the title they so impressively won last season.

Chelsea ultimately finished fifth, five points behind fourth-placed Liverpool and the final Champions League qualification spot, while they, like many others, were well off the title pace, ending the season a mammoth 30 points behind champions Manchester City.

And while the Blues could end the season with silverware at Wembley, Wise does not believe Conte has matched the standards that the Blues demand.

“I think all managers are under pressure, if I'm being honest, not just one," he said after a charity match between Chelsea Legends and Inter Forever, arranged in memory of Ray Wilkins. 

"I think a few of them have lost their job this year and it will carry on being that way. It is not just Antonio, I think it's everyone.

"There are certain levels you have got to get to, if you don’t get to those levels I think this is the way that football is, it’s cut-throat and you are out, it is as simple as that really.

"There are different expectations at different clubs, from the bottom to the top. I think there are certain expectations here that you would expect to be in the Champions League and challenging for the title, challenging for trophies.

“Unfortunately there has been only one that we have challenged for, which is now the FA Cup. The rest of them we have fell away really.”

Wise spent 11 years at Chelsea between 1990 and 2001, and he believes that current owner Roman Abramovich will have expected the club to be at the very top-end of the Premier League table this season.

Indeed, he has pointed to the money available to Conte, who oversaw a summer of recruitment last year that resulted in the signings of Alvaro Morata for £60 million (€69m/$80m), and Tiemoue Bakayoko for £40m (€46m/$53m), among others.

“At the start of the season, you have things that you have to achieve as a manager," he added. "As expectations with each individual club, what are Chelsea’s expectations?

“I would like to think that their expectations with the money that has been spent and the structure of this football club with the way that it is done, is that you would like to think you are challenging for trophy and getting in the Champions League and being close to winning silverware as well.”