Chelsea must not give up on Champions League place – Conte

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Chelsea must make sure they are in a place to take advantage of any slip-ups by Tottenham or Liverpool in the race for a Champions League spot, says boss Antonio Conte.

Conte seemed almost resigned to missing out on the top four after the home loss to Spurs was followed by a 1-1 draw with West Ham at Stamford Bridge.

But Tottenham’s draw with Brighton means Chelsea can go to within five points of their London rivals if they can beat Burnley on Thursday night.

A victory over the Clarets at Turf Moor would give fifth-placed Chelsea four games to make up the deficit.

“We have to try until the end to reach this target [Champions League],” Conte said.

“If we want to be realistic with five games to go it is not simple to reduce the gap, but we must have the will to fight and the desire to try.

“We have an important game against Burnley. They are having a fantastic season and it won’t be easy. We have to avoid what happened against Southampton in the first 60 minutes. We played badly, not only technically and tactically but also in spirit.

“They won the last five games and are in great form. We must pay great attention.

“We cannot think about next season because we are struggling a lot in this season. We have to finish in the best position in the league and try to reach the final in the FA Cup final now.”