Costa ends goal drought to help Chelsea open up 7-point lead

Posted April 26, 2017

"Our answer was very good and for this reason I must be pleased".

"I have in my mind the starting 11 but Tuesday I want to check the physical condition of every player because our game [against Tottenham] was an intense game and we're still [low on] energy".

Cesc Fabregas - beginning ahead of compatriot Pedro - slid a pass to the area to leave Southampton defenseman Maya Yoshida isolated up against Costa, who cut the ball back for Danger to fire unerringly across Fraser Forster and to the bottom left corner.

"In my team, I don't want selfish players".

"We must be stronger than this speculation because we must be compact and think that our target is really important", the Italian said.

But regardless of what Spurs achieve at Selhurst Park, Conte and his players will know that they passed a genuine test of nerve against Southampton.

Antonio Conte's first campaign may end with the league and cup double, but the Chelsea manager says the best is yet to come from a team in "transition".

"These are two different competitions and we have six games to go".

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The hosts had already done enough to take another step towards the Premier League title by that point, increasing their lead at the top of the table to seven points for 24 hours at least, with Spurs in action on tomorrow night.

Cedric Soares could become the first Southampton player since Kevin Davies in 2001 to receive a yellow card in four consecutive Premier League matches.

Forster spread himself to deny Kante on the counter before Conte called on Terry for the final four minutes for his first appearance since the FA Cup win at Wolves in February.

Romeu, on the other hand, is now one of Saints' most influential players, performing in the defensive midfield anchorman role admirably following Victor Wanyama's summer departure to Tottenham.

Hazard has had a very good season for Conte's club as he appeared in 36 games for the blues. These are the most important things for us. I just want to finish the season well and we will see afterwards, " he said.

Cahill called the win a "massive step", adding: "It's the first time for a long time we've played before Tottenham".

"He's an important player for this team because he can do fantastic work to recover the ball and start the play".

Southampton are still without the services of long-term injury cases Matt Targett, Alex McCarthy, Charlie Austin, and Virgil van Dijk.

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