Antonio Conte tasted defeat as Chelsea manager for the first time in his first game in charge, even if it was just a preseason friendly. Rapid Vienna beat the Blues 2-0 on Saturday, and Conte will hope for a much more improved performance when Chelsea play Wolfsberger AC – aka WAC RZ Pellets – in Klagenfurt, Austria on Wednesday.
Conte have already made one of the signings of the summer in convincing N'Golo Kante to leave the English Premier League champions Leicester City for Chelsea, and while the France international will not feature in this match, the squad will be buzzing at the capture.
Another new signing – Michy Batshuayi – has been training with the squad, but it remains to be seen if he features in the preseason friendly against Wolfsberger.
Conte believes he has the workings of a really great squad at Chelsea, but time is essential in getting them playing the way he wants them to play.
"I am very happy because I am finding the players with the right attitude and the right behavior," Conte told reporters on Tuesday. "They are great workers and this is very important because we need to have a bit of time to go into a new idea of football, and a new method of work with different tactical, physical and mental aspects.
"It's also important to have a bit of time for me to know the players and for the players to know me. In the Euros I had a finished team. Now we are building. In this moment it's normal I have a bit of difficulty with this change because with Chelsea we are beginning our season.
"I am getting to know a lot of new players and I'm bringing them a new idea of football. We need a bit of time but I saw a lot of positive things this week."
Conte was happy to see the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Pedro Rodriguez, Cesar Azpilicueta, Gary Cahill and Juan Cuadrado arrive back from holiday, because the manager knows the sooner he is able to inculcate his ideas to the entire team, the better it is for this new Chelsea era.
"Today (Tuesday) Fabregas, Pedro, Cuadrado, Cahill and Azpi arrived," Conte added. "This is important because I need to have the complete group to work, and to transfer my ideas to all the players."
Where to Watch Live
The preseason friendly between Wolfsberger AC (WAC RZ Pellets) and Chelsea is scheduled for an 8 p.m. local time (7 p.m. BST, 11.30 p.m. IST, 2 p.m. ET) start.
India: No TV coverage. Live streaming: Chelsea TV Online.
UK: TV: Chelsea TV. Live Streaming: Chelsea TV Online.
Australia and Spain: TV: Bein Sports. Live Streaming: Bein Sports Connect.
UAE: TV: Abu Dhabi Sports.
International: Chelsea TV Online.