Gary Neville gives Antonio Conte ominous warning over David Luiz snub

Antonio Conte

Young Dane Andreas Christensen got the nod over Luiz.

"The coach has to make the best decision for the team, and tonight the best decision for the team was to play with Christensen and to have, on the bench, (Ethan) Ampadu".

"Lukaku is also a fantastic player, and a great friend, but I hope he can not score against us".

The Chelsea boss has refuted those claims though, as he has confirmed that it was only a tactical decision.

"It's normal, this can happen to everyone of my players".

"Yesterday was one of effervescence, they had life, and I thought Chelsea deserved to win".

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"I have to make important decisions". I saw him play against Roma [a 3-0 Champions League defeat] the other night and he didn't look anywhere near it. "Sometimes, I can make mistakes or sometimes I can do the best thing".

Perhaps that is why, as the Mirror put it, "David Luiz was left upset as he was made to watch from the side of the pitch and act as a ball boy". Today, I did this, and Christensen played an unbelievable game.

Abramovich had been a driving force behind the decision to re-sign Luiz last summer and regards the Brazilian as a world-class defender, but that did not influence Conte's decision.

The Italian guided Chelsea to the Premier League title in his first season in charge, which included an incredible 13-match winning streak, meaning he had won four successive domestic crowns, having won three for Juventus.

In dropping David Luiz for one of Chelsea's biggest games of the season, Conte gave the clearest message that he will not manage in fear of what owner Roman Abramovich might do next.

Wilkins, who also represented Manchester United during his playing career, believes Luiz would be better employed as a midfielder but feels he is too much of a liability at the back.

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