“I don’t know if we will finish in the top four” Conte’s post-match reaction that the fans won’t like

It appears that Antonio Conte is once again on collision course with our board after he admitted that we could fail to finish in the top four this season, following our 2-1 defeat against Manchester United on Sunday. The loss takes us to the 5th place in the Premier League standings and two points behind Tottenham, who moved up to the 4th place following their 1-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

Willian put us ahead before Romelu Lukaku equalised for United. Substitute Jesse Lingard sealed the victory for Jose Mourinho’s men later on.

After the game, Conte admitted that it is now a serious possibility that we could end up failing to qualify for the Champions League next season.

“We have to be disappointed with the final result,” Conte was quoted by the Express. “I think we had a good chance to get three points against a competitor for a place in the Champions League, but at the end we are talking about another defeat.

“In these types of situations [when you take the lead], you have to manage the game better and you must be able, with experience, with maturity to get three points.

“I don’t know if we will finish in the top four, but this [missing out] could be a possibility for sure. In this league to find a place in Champions League is not simple, it is not easy.

“In this country there is the only championship that you can find six teams that start to fight to win the title and for a place in the Champions League. This is the only country to have this competition and there is this risk we will stay out of the Champions League.”

The words are likely to cause further friction between Conte and the board. It is now unlikely that the Italian will remain our boss beyond this season.

We face a difficult Premier League clash next weekend against Manchester City before taking on Crystal Palace and then Barcelona in the second leg of our Champions League last-16 clash.

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