Baba Rahman discloses how Antonio Conte drove him out of Chelsea
Chelsea left back Baba Rahman says he was forced out of the West London club by Italian coach Antonio Conte when he joined the team in 2016.
He says a fall out with Antonio Conte forced him to quit Chelsea for Schalke 04 where his former Augsburg manager was then in charge.
After a mixed bag first season with the Blues, the left-back was among the casualties as then newly-appointed Chelsea manager Conte hit the ground running at Stamford Bridge.
Baba had joined Chelsea from German side Augsburg the season earlier for 14 million pounds.
“I left Chelsea because I didn’t get on well with Conte. When he arrived I had a first meeting with him before the season ended,” Baba told Joy Sports .
“He told me how he wanted to play and how I can be in the team if I decide to stay. So I said okay that’s fine. When we went on vacation and came back, he was at the Euros [with Italy] so we started the pre-season and then he came to join us.
“And during the pre-season I didn’t like the way he was reacting toward me. So I went to speak to the sporting director and I told him my worries.
“I told him this is what is happening in training and I don’t have confidence anymore and if I stay here I will not be confident enough to show my qualities.”
In his first season, Baba made 15 Premier League appearances, having signed for the London-based club during the managerial reign of Jose Mourinho.
The Portuguese coach was later fired and temporarily replaced by Guus Hiddink before Conte, then manager of Italy, was announced as new Chelsea manager ahead of the 2016-17 campaign.
“The first meeting, he [Conte] told me to just keep calm and keep working hard so I said that’s fine. This was in London and then we went to Austria and it started getting worse and that’s when I said no, I can’t take it anymore,” Baba added.
“I don’t know, maybe my name was easy on his tongue, like every small thing was like ‘Baba’ ‘Baba’ and most of the players came to ask me what’s going on and I said I don’t know.”