International

Conte slams United rough tactics on Hazard

2017-03-14 08:31
Antonio Conte (Getty Images)

Cape Town - Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has accused Manchester United of targeting Eden Hazard with robust challenges during their FA Cup triumph at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues downed the 10-man Red Devils, who saw midfielder Andere Herrera receive his marching orders late in the opening half, after two avoidable challenges with Hazard.

N'golo Kante went on to score a second-half winner for Conte's side as they advanced to face Tottenham in the semi-final of England's oldest cup competition, but Conte bemoaned the way United tried to stifle his Belgian playmaker.

"In 20, 25 minutes for Hazard, it was impossible for him to play football," Conte said in the post-match interview. "I see only that he got a lot of kicks. I don't think that I'm crazy and I see only him in this situation.

"He started receiving kicks and finished receiving kicks. No one person can say this did not happen. This tactic, to play by going to kick the opponent, does not exist. It's not football for me.

"I don't think this can be a tactic," the Italian said in reference to an alleged stamp by defender Marcus Rojo. I think sometimes when you play against players with great talent you try and intimidate these players. I think the referee must protect this type of player."

Meanwhile Jose Mourinho admitted Michael Oliver's decision to send off Ander Herrera had ruined United's chances of beating Chelsea in an explosive FA Cup quarter-final.

Herrera's second challenge on Hazard made only the slightest contact and, while Mourinho stopped short of openly criticising Oliver, he did his best to make clear his frustration at the decision.

"Everybody can analyse from different perspectives but we all watch the match until the red card and after the red card," he said.

Read more on:    chelsea  |  fa cup  |  antonio conte  |  soccer
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