Antonio Conte against everyone: How the new Chelsea boss saw his time with the Azzurri
The new Chelsea boss had some harsh words for the Italian FA09:11 Sunday 3 July 2016, 9:11 3 Jul 2016
Antonio Conte was critical of the Italian FA after his side were beaten on penalties by Germany on Saturday night.
The Italian, who will leave his post as coach of his national side to become Chelsea manager, says he felt alone throughout his spell with the Euro 2016 quarter-finalists.
The 46-year-old took over the Azzurri after a three year spell with Juventus and spent two years in the job where he believes he built a familial-type atmosphere among the players, but is unhappy with the support he got from the media and the Italian FA.
"I didn't see anyone alongside me, the media, or anyone, it was always Conte against everyone," the manager said. "I've always fought for the interests of the national team, not for myself.
"If I'm honest I've never felt supported by anyone. The president of the Italian federation has always been alongside me but he can only do so much. My decision has been taken, it's a shame as we have created a family and I hope what we leave can bear fruit."
Conte fought tooth and nail to have the Coppa Italia final moved and believed Italy would have to adopt a siege-like mentality in order to usurp the better sides in Europe.
"I hope in the future we can give more time for the national side," Conte said. "I fought in vain to move the Coppa Italia final as I wanted to work with the players because our only chance of achieving something great, our only hope, was to work as a small war machine.
"I think we have proved that today, and throughout the European Championship.
"I hope that we can really leave a lasting mark in terms of love for the national team and for the shirt. We have tried to put this message across and I hope it's been conveyed despite our elimination."
Widely considered the best tactician on display at the tournament in France, Conte will head to London to take over Chelsea where he is tasked with rebuilding the mess left behind by Jose Mourinho that includes an aging squad and several players whose futures remain up in the air.
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