Chelsea boss Antonio Conte has suggested the club’s board went against his wishes by allowing Nemanja Matic to join Manchester United this summer.
The Serbian completed a £40million move to Old Trafford last week after being omitted from Chelsea’s pre-season tour squad.
Many Chelsea supporters were angered that Matic was allowed to join a Premier League rival and Jose Mourinho said the move would not have been possible had the midfielder not been so desperate to join the Red Devils.
Mourinho was furious in 2015 when Petr Cech was granted a move to Arsenal out of goodwill from Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich.
And Conte hinted that a similar scenario had panned out with Matic this summer with an abrupt response to a question about Matic.
‘You have to ask the club about this,’ said Conte.
The Italian then sent a thinly-veiled message to Chelsea’s board by claiming he has a ‘small’ squad ahead of the season.
‘Now for us its very important to try to improve our squa – in the numerical aspect – we have a small squad,’ said Conte.
‘I think only one player is not enough to improve our team, we need more players.’
Mourinho hailed Matic following his Manchester United debut against Sampdoria, hailing the Serbian as a ‘genius’.
‘He needs time but [his] experience, intelligence, a genius in the way he thinks – he thinks football,’ said Mourinho.
‘We will help him to be ready sooner rather than later.’
Chelsea have made four signings so far this summer following the arrivals of Tiemoue Bakayoko, Alvaro Morata, Antonio Rudiger and Willy Caballero.
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