Chelsea coach, Antonio Conte has charged his wards to beat Arsenal in today’s Community Shield at Wembley to give Chelsea a boost of confidence in the new season.
Victories against Arsenal set Chelsea up for their 2017 Premier League title-winning season, when Conte revived the Blues from 10th the previous term.
Following last September’s 3-0 loss at the Emirates Stadium, the Italian switched to a 3-4-3 formation and the Blues won 13 successive Premier League games.
The Premier League win over Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in February then provided impetus for the title run-in.
But then Conte was denied the double in his first season as Blues boss when Arsenal won May’s FA Cup final 2-1.
Conte said: “It was a pity to lose the game, to lose the FA Cup final against Arsenal after a really great season for us.
“Now there is another game. We know very well Arsenal is a strong team.
“We’re waiting a game very difficult for us and want to try to start the season with a win. The same [for] Arsenal. I want to see a good game, for the players, for the people.”
Conte plans to stick with the formation which served Chelsea so well last term.
“After a good season you have to keep the positive things and try to change the negative things,” he added.
“One positive thing was our formation, our system. Now we are trying to continue to work in this system to try to improve. “Every system needs to improve season by season, year by year.”
Eden Hazard [broken ankle] and Tiemoue Bakayoko [knee] are Chelsea’s only injury absentees. Victor Moses is available before his suspension in the Premier League opener with Burnley.
And striker Diego Costa remains in exile.