Mikel Says Conte’s Chelsea Fitter Than Mourinho’s

By Adebayo Williams

Super Eagles midfielder John Obi Mikel has hailed Chelsea coach Antonio Conte’s training sessions saying he has doubled the team’s fitness levels. Mikel, who captained the Eagles to a victory over Zambia in World Cup qualifying, said the team was much fitter than they were under former boss Jose Mourinho. The Italian boss has doubled team’s training sessions and also altered players’ diets to bring out the best in his players. Mikel the team’s poor fitness last season had been a factor in their 10th place finish under Mourinho.

“Yes, I think it played a part last season (not being fit enough).

“One thing is for sure, the team is a lot fitter this season. A lot of players are going to be much, much fitter and that is only going to help the team.

“[Double sessions] That’s the way he wants to train, that’s his style, that’s his way that he thinks we can win and that he thinks can get Chelsea back to where they belong. Obviously, quite a lot was made last year that a lot of the players were not fit, so the club decided to go for someone to make sure we are fit.

“The players have responded very well to him, we are going with whatever the manager wants to do in training, everyone is putting in their best and we have to keep going his way,” he told Goal.

Mikel is yet to make an appearance under Conte this season after his bronze medal-winning adventure with the U-23 side at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

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