Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has warned his players not to be distracted by the return of Jose Mourinho to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
The Blues take on Manchester United in the Premier League in the first meeting with their former boss since his departure from west London last December.
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Conte believes Mourinho is deserving of a warm reception from the club’s supporters but wants his players to focus on the prize of victory once the first whistle is blown.
“We have a tough game against a strong team in Manchester United,” Conte told reporters. “It is not against Jose Mourinho. It is important, I repeat, to focus on the pitch, on the players of Manchester United, and to prepare in the right way.
“It is normal in this situation, when a coach or manager comes back to a club where he has done a lot of positive things, it is normal to talk about him. But it is important for us to focus and concentrate on the game.
“It is right for him to have a good reception. Then when the whistle sounds, it’s important to start and play, to see United as an enemy, an opponent.”