Conte reveals the two blockbuster signings that Chelsea missed out on – including Liverpool icon

Ben Stewart
Antonio Conte has revealed the two signings Chelsea missed out on in 2017
Antonio Conte has revealed the two signings Chelsea missed out on in 2017

Antonio Conte has revealed the two superstars that he tried to sign as Chelsea boss in 2017 which could have made the club a juggernaut at the time.

The Italian boss was dynamite during his first stint in the Premier League. He instantly made an impact at Stamford Bridge, winning the Premier League title during his first season in charge.

However, following an electric first season in the hot seat, Chelsea struggled to live up to the same expectations during his second season with the club.

Despite winning the FA Cup, Conte’s side struggled to match expectations in the league during that season season. As the side slumped to a fifth place finish, Conte packed his bags at the end of the 2017–18 campaign.

While things ultimately seemed to unravel for the Italian boss at Stamford Bridge, things could have turned out significantly different if Chelsea had landed their top targets in the summer of 2017.

During an interview with The Telegraph, Conte recently namedropped the two players that Chelsea wanted to sign that summer.

“My history says that I always arrived at my clubs in a difficult situation with problems. I always build,” Conte said.

“After my first season at Chelsea, when we won the title, we could have become dominant in England. We spoke with (Romelu) Lukaku and (Virgil) van Dijk, and with those two important players we could have changed the situation.”

Chelsea failed to get either deal over the line as Lukaku joined Man Utd and Liverpool eventually managed to prize Van Dijk away from Southampton.

Of the two targets, missing out on Van Dijk will undoubtedly be the most painful for Conte. The Dutch defender completely changed Liverpool’s fortunes upon his arrival and he could’ve had a similar impact at Chelsea.

Missing out on those players looks particularly painful from a Chelsea perspective when you realise who they actually signed that summer.

The likes of Tiemoue Bakayoko, Alvaro Morata and Danny Drinkwater were among the high-profile flops that were signed by the club in 2017.

However, it is also worth remembering that Antonio Rudiger joined the club that summer and he went on to have an excellent Chelsea career, so it wasn’t all bad.

With that being said, players like Van Dijk don’t come around often and Chelsea could have gone on to dominate the league if they had managed to make a deal back in the day.

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