Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has called upon the club to show 'ambition' after giving up the Premier League title this season, insisting it is the responsibility of the board and not the coach to set the agenda on what is to be achieved.
Conte has seemingly been at war with his Stamford Bridge superiors ever since Chelsea lifted the Premier League trophy in May and has appeared less than thrilled with some of the players he has been presented with, as well as the targets the clubs missed out on.
"This is not a question for me, about the ambition," he is quoted as saying by Sky Sports. "The club has to show the ambition, not the coach. The coach has to work every day very hard but the club has to show the ambition."
With the focus on Manchester City, Conte almost seems jealous of the very healthy relationship that Pep Guardiola enjoys with his executives at the Etihad Stadium, with the club also able to consistently spend big sums in the transfer market.
Conte speaks of his admiration for how Man City are playing this season and that it is difficult to find a weakness in their team. He adds that when you link a good manager with the ability to spend a lot of money, this is the result.— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) March 2, 2018
"I think when you work very well and there is a great feeling between the manager and the club - then you can work in the way you want to try and improve the team because also Man City has the possibility to spend a lot of money," the Italian said.
"When you link this situation - a good manager, money to spend on the transfer market, and this ambition - this [dominance] is the final result."
Ahead of the game, Conte will make a decision on whether to name £15m January signing Ross Barkley in the matchday squad. The player, who will definitely travel to the game, has recently overcome a recurrence of a hamstring injury.
"Ross Barkley trained with us this week and now he's recovered from his injury," Conte commented ahead of the upcoming trip to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.
"He will come with us and then I will decide if I find a place on the bench for him, or if he will be in the stand for another week," the boss added.
But while Barkley might be involved, Chelsea are definitely still without David Luiz after the Brazilian missed the last two games. Tiemoue Bakayoko is carrying a knock from a minor training injury and young midfielder Ethan Ampadu has also been ruled out of action.