Antonio Conte's relatively short stint at Chelsea has been an eventful one. In his first season at Stamford Bridge, things took a while to get going. He was bookies favourite to be sacked just a couple of months in after crushing defeats at the hands of Arsenal and Liverpool. Things looked bleak for Chelsea coming off the back of such a terrible season the year before. It took some managerial ingenuity from Conte to turn things around, opting for 3 at the back instead of the traditional 4. This gave more protection to David Luiz who would often make audacious runs forward. The new system gave Luiz protection, who subsequently was picked for players Team of the Year awards and lead Chelsea to their 5th Premier League trophy.

The season did not come without controversy however as tensions with star forward Diego Costa bubbled to the surface in January after a staggering offer from Chinese club Tianjin reportedly caught Costa's eye. Conte is rumoured to have fallen out with Costa and told him to leave. Chelsea managed to keep the situation under wraps and Costa eventually returned to training. Conte and Costa appeared to move past the debacle as Costa became Chelsea's top scorer in a season that saw #Chelsea amount the most wins ever in a single #Premier League season. It appears, however, Conte had not forgotten the incident, telling Costa later in the summer that he was "not in my plans" and outcasting him from the Chelsea first team.

Chelsea's transfer policy

Chelsea's summer window was a very hap-hazard one, players went in, players went out, but not much seemed to change.

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The squad itself seemed to maintain about the same level of quality with little to no improvements. The two marquee changes were Morata for Costa and Bakayoko replaced Matic. Barely changes that excited Chelsea fans as a new financially responsible Chelsea showed its reluctance to spend money. Not only were they not going for the big names but they were even missing out on signing Chamerlaine who reportedly shunned Chelsea in favour of Liverpool and failed to cross the line with the Barkley deal, resulting in them having to wait until January to sign him.

Bakayoko has subsequently played poorly bringing into question the club's decision to let a proven Premier League player like Matic go, especially to a title rival. Drinkwater was also signed for a considerable fee of £40million while the club loaned out Loftus-Cheek who plays the same position. Murmurs began to come out of the club that Conte wasn't happy on missing out on some of his main transfer targets. Like managers in the past at Chelsea, Conte appeared to be left in the dark regarding transfer targets.

The start of the January window has sparked a lot of activity across the Premier League, Liverpool has signed Van Dijk, Man city has signed Laporte, #Man United has signed #Sanchez, Arsenal has signed Aubameyang and Chelsea have thus far only signed Barkley.

After Chelsea's EFL Cup defeat to Arsenal in which William was forced to come off early, Conte was forced to bring on newly signed Barkley. He commented after the game "when there is an injury to one of your best players it is not simple, especially when on the bench the only substitute is Ross Barkley." He went on to complain about his lack of say he yielded in transfer policy, blaming the board for his depleted squad. "I think the club decide our transfer market. As I said before, my task is to improve the team, about the transfer market, from the summer, the club decides every single player." It doesn't look like Conte's gained more control this January stating that "I don't remember Palmieri", Palmieri is a player that Chelsea is currently in final talks with to sign on deadline day. Whether Conte knew or not, it has reportedly gone down badly with the Chelsea board.

Chelsea poor run of form

The results this season for Chelsea have been average at best when compared to their record-breaking season last year. The lack of form may be coming from the top-down, as Conte appears more and more unsettled even getting into a war of words with United boss Jose Mourinho. Since this distraction results have even worsened, the most recent being a 0-3 loss at home to Bournemouth. The question is whether Conte can turn it around or is his Chelsea career destined to end the way of so many Chelsea managers before him? If the issue between the board and the manager can be settled the club are still in with a shout in all the major competitions. The fixtures in the coming weeks will no doubt decide his future and may indeed test his squad to the limits. Chelsea faces 2 legs against #Barcelona in the Champions League with both Manchester City and Manchester United sandwiched between them in the league. Could these games provide yet another turn in Conte's roller-coaster ride at Chelsea or will they just prove him right that his squad is not equipped to face the challenges ahead?

Chelsea has proved what they can do in the past when their backs are against the wall, Will the #Barcelona fixture prove to be yet another chapter in their history of turning things around?

Only time will tell!