Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has spoken about the FA Cup final and what it means to the players – and how they are desperate to win it for the fans.
Courtois admitted the season has not gone to plan, and that the players are sad about the way things ended with the loss on the final day to Newcastle, and missing out on the top four. He also noted that they want to win – but not for Antonio Conte, who is thought to be leaving the club, but for the fans who pay good money to watch a side who have been sub-par this season at times.
Standard Sport report he said: “Everybody is looking forward now to the Cup final. We know Sunday [when Chelsea lost 3-0 away to Newcastle] was not a good game but we knew after Wednesday [when Chelsea drew 1-1 at home to Huddersfield], it’d be difficult to even have a chance and I don’t think we turned up in the right way at Newcastle.
“Obviously they wanted to finish their season well in front of their fans…we didn’t do our best. We had to apologise to our fans about that and hope that on Saturday we can play a good game and win.
“I’m sure [Conte sent] a message that we have to be ready for Saturday, have a good week of work and be prepared for one last good game.
“I think almost everyone is the same here in the dressing room, we have a big motivation to win. And especially because we don’t have a trophy this season. We want to win.”
“It’s not about the manager, we want to win for the fans and the club.
“If you want to win trophies, firstly, it’s for the fans. They come there every week to support you. We are ready for it.”
Conte will not only be playing for pride in terms of ending his Chelsea career on a high note – and winning another trophy as manager, to take it to two in two seasons, but he will also want to make sure that he stops old nemesis Jose Mourinho in his quest to add another trophy to his collection.
A loss for either side would mean finishing the season without a trophy, something that won’t go down well with the board or the fans of either club, and Mourinho knows he needs to win something after the success of Man City in England and Liverpool in Europe this season.