“When a top team has a few bad results the first thing they try to say is that the players are not happy and we’re not behind the coach,” Courtois told reporters ahead of Chelsea’s Carabao Cup match against Everton. “But against Watford you saw we fought for every moment and we fought when we were down, so everybody can see we’re behind the coach. Those rumors are easy to spread but I don’t think they are true. If somebody is unhappy, instead of going to the press I think they would say it internally, so it’s not true.”
Courtois doubled down, adding that Conte isn’t to blame, and the players need to be the ones to pick up the slack with the results not going their way.
“First of all, it’s the players that have to do it on the pitch so it was important to win, to fight. At the moment it’s more running, fighting and battling for every ball than maybe the best football.”
Courtois has played every minute of Chelsea’s Premier League season so far, but could get some time off on Wednesday. Last Carabao Cup match, Conte chose to rest Courtois in favor of backup Willy Caballero. In fact, Conte left Courtois completely out of the squad, with third-stringer Eduardo named to the bench behind Caballero.
Riyad Mahrez played Jamie Vardy through to trouble Thibaut Courtois with a 25th minute shot that dragged wide of the diving keeper and the far post.
Alvaro Morata had a 34th minute chance blocked by a sliding Wes Morgan as Chelsea bid to take an away lead.
N’Golo Kante has sprung a few counters at the King Power Stadium, but it was his Chelsea giveaway sprung a three-man counter for Leicester. Riyad Mahrez slid the ball to Islam Slimani, but Thibaut Courtois made a terrific stop.
Morata scored moments later, rising over Morgan to meet Cesar Azpilicuta’s cross with a header beyond the reach of Kasper Schmeichel.
Chelsea has completed its first summer signing, grabbing veteran goalkeeper Willy Caballero from Manchester City on a free transfer.
Caballero served as a backup for most of his City career, playing second-fiddle first to Joe Hart and then to Claudio Bravo, but earned plenty of first-team action both in Cup action and also during stretches where each first-teamer was benched for poor performances. Overall, Caballero made 48 appearances for City since arriving from Malaga in 2014.
With the presence of Bravo at City plus the arrival of Ederson to challenge the Chilean for his first-choice position, there was no place for Caballero at the Etihad.
The 35-year-old Argentinian will likely again serve as a backup at Chelsea, with Thibaut Courtois firmly entrenched in the first-team role. Last season Asmir Begovic backed up Courtois, but he was sold to Bournemouth this summer. Begovic only earned eight appearances for the Blues last season across all competitions, but that was skewed slightly due to the lack of European competition.
There were reports that Newcastle United was interested in bringing Caballero in to be their starting goalkeeper, including from Lee Ryder of Newcastle paper The Chronicle, but he has chosen to join the defending champions instead.
Chelsea has done most of its early business on the outgoing end this summer, netting nearly $82 million on the sale of players such as Nathan Ake, Juan Cuadrado, Bertrand Traore, and Begovic.
The Blues shot-stopper started all but two PL matches this past campaign, and now the Belgian international is seeking an extension with the London club.
“Contract talks haven’t opened but I am happy at Chelsea,” Courtois told Sky Sports after Chelsea’s loss to Arsenal at Wembley.
“I hope they reward me with a good contract, then there will be no doubt I will sign it.”
The 25-year-old keeper has been in at Stamford Bridge since arriving from Genk in 2011, but Courtois spent three seasons in Spain on a loan spell.
Courtois likened this PL campaign to his time on loan at Atletico Madrid, stating that while his side’s achievements in the league were everything Chelsea could have hoped for that there was still more the Blues could have done.
“It’s not a good feeling now,” Courtois told Chelsea’s official website. “I had the same thing in Spain when I won the league and then lost the Champions League.
“We wanted to end on a high, now we feel sad. Winning is everything so this is hard to face but we have to try to forget it.”