Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone has praised the intensity shown by Chelsea after his side's 2-1 defeat against the Blues last week.
Antonio Conte's men came from 1-0 behind at the Wanda Metropolitano when the two teams met in the Champions League, and Simeone has now opened up on what made the tie so tough for his players.
"We had never faced a team with the intensity of Chelsea," Simeone told Spanish radio station Cadena Ser (via Evening Standard)
"We struggled to press them effectively. We improved when (Antoine) Griezmann went on (Tiemoue) Bakayoko and left David Luiz free. But we were imprecise."
This unrivalled intensity, according to the Rojiblancos boss, is evidence within itself that English clubs have drastically improved in Europe over the last year - making it much more difficult for his side in this season's Champions League:
"The English teams have improved so it’s much more open. There is less margin for error now."
Each English team competing in Europe's most prestigious club competition have won their two opening games - apart from Liverpool, who have instead picked up two draws.
With five Premier League sides competing this campaign - Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham and the Reds - there is an added expectation for better performances from them compared to previous years.
It was in 2012 when an English club last lifted the trophy, and the last four Champions League victors have all come from Spain.
But with some of the world's best managers controlling the Premier League's strongest teams, fans in England will be hoping that the tide will turn in their favour come June.