Ex-defender predicts where Chelsea will finish next season

Steve Nicol reckons Chelsea will struggle to defend their Premier League title next season

antonio conte
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte Photo: The Sport Review

Steve Nicol believes that Chelsea are going to struggle to defend their Premier League title next season.

The Blues were by far the Premier League’s top performing team last term as they won the title in Antonio Conte’s first season in charge at Stamford Bridge.

The west London side lifted the trophy having won a record 30 Premier League games to claim the trophy for the second time in three years.

However, Chelsea did not have the distraction of European football last season as they were able to focus solely on domestic affairs.

The Blues are preparing for a return to the Champions League next term after their title triumph last season.

And Nicol feels that the west London side are likely to struggle to retain their title because of the distraction of European football next term.

Speaking to ESPN FC, Conte said: “The Champions League is something Antonio Conte will want to do well in. That will take a little focus of Premier League as well.

“There is nothing harder than trying to retain your title – and I don’t think they will.”

Chelsea will go straight into the group stage of the Champions League after their impressive title triumph last season.

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