Antonio Conte refused to use Chelsea‘s midweek trip to Madrid in the Champions League as an excuse for the 1-0 loss to Manchester City on Saturday.

The Blues had one less day than Pep Guardiola’s side to prepare for the big clash at Stamford Bridge after arriving back from the Spanish capital following their 2-1 win over Atletico Madrid in the early hours of Thursday morning.

City, meanwhile, played Shakhtar Donetsk 2-0 at home on Tuesday evening and looked impressive against Chelsea four days later as Kevin De Bruyne’s second-half strike secured a 1-0 win for Guardiola’s league leaders.

Conte hinted his players may have been suffering from fatigue but did not want to use the trip to Madrid in midweek as an excuse for the performance against City – which he was pleased with.

In Pictures | Atletico Madrid vs Chelsea | 27/09/2017

He told reporters: “For sure there is disappointment for the result but at the same time, I am pleased for the commitment of my players.

“We gave everything but the most important thing is to see your players giving everything.

“It happened like this today. We played against a really good team.

“We created chances to score but we didn’t take it. They created chances and they were good to take their chances.”

When asked about the fatigue issue, Conte replied: “We could take this as an excuse but if you have to play another massive game after a big one, you must think about the fatigue of your players.

“It’s impossible to go to press box-to-box. You have not energy to continue, to play this game.”