Chelsea boss Antonio Conte: 'Cesc Fabregas changed my mind about him'

Hazard runs with the ball during the early drills in Chelsea's pre Atletico Madrid session

Hazard runs with the ball during the early drills in Chelsea's pre Atletico Madrid session

Antonio Conte has admitted that he was initially not convinced of the ability of Cesc Fabregas to fit into his Chelsea side, although the talented midfielder has completely changed his mind and is now an integral part of the Italian coaches team. "Maybe anxious is not the right word but you can imagine", he said ahead of his side's Champions League clash against Atletico Madrid.

Fabregas, 30, struggled to hold down a regular place in the Chelsea side last season but has been much more involved since the departure of Nemanja Matic in the summer.

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"I think Cesc at the start of the last season did not play a lot, but I was very happy because through work he tried to change my mind and it happened", Conte told reporters ahead of Chelsea's Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid.

"The other is what I did, put your head down and be humble, show him that he's wrong".

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"He trusts me. He knows exactly what I can give to the team".

Fabregas, 30, is contracted until mid-2019 at Chelsea, the club he joined from Barcelona in June 2014. I understand his philosophy and must say I am very proud of this. With my players I suffer. I'm where I want to be. I'm where I want to be, enjoying my football, playing week in and week out and I want to enjoy that. When the moment comes to talk about different things I'll be here, ready for it.

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Conte witnessed his team draw with Atletico Madrid in the Champions League on Tuesday night to secure passage to the knockout rounds as group victor ahead of Roma. He's a victor in his mind, in his mentality.

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