Chelsea manager Antonio Conte says that he must avoid “a Mourinho season” as the champions attempt to defend their Premier League title.
Jose Mourinho won the league with Chelsea in 2015 but was sacked the next season with the club in 16th place.
“Two years ago Chelsea finished 10th; that cannot happen again,” Conte said.
The last team to win back-to-back Premier League titles were Manchester United, who completed a hat-trick of successive wins in 2008-09.
“We know the difficulty and for sure we want to avoid the Mourinho season with Chelsea,” Conte added.
“The coaches of the previous two champions [Chelsea and Leicester] both lost their jobs [the next season] and we are working very well to find the best solutions and use them,” Conte said.
“We have a lot of young players and it is necessary to try and develop them.”
Chelsea continued their pre-season with a 2-1 defeat to Inter Milan in Singapore, in a game featuring an amazing own goal by Inter’s Geoffrey Kondogbia.
Kondogbia lobbed a bizarre backpass into his own net from 40 yards, but the Italians won thanks to goals from Stevan Jovetic and reported Manchester United target Ivan Perisic.
Chelsea’s club record £60m signing Alvaro Morata was quiet on his first start but got an hour under his belt before being replaced.