Conte's first match will be against Rapid Vienna

Antonio Conte’s first match in charge of Chelsea will be a friendly against Rapid Vienna on 16th July.

Chelsea’s pre-season campaign for 2016-17 will start in the same venue where Jose Mourinho fine-tuned preparations for the 2014-15 season when Chelsea won the Premier League and Capital One Cup.

Italy head coach Antonio Conte takes charge as Mourinho’s permanent successor after the Azzurri’s involvement in this summer’s European Championships comes to an end.

His first two games will be in Austria before the Blues appear in the International Champions Cup in North America.

The week-long training camp in the Austrian market town of Velden will be the Italian’s first opportunity to work with his new players.

Chelsea will face WAC RZ Pellets on July 20. They played the same team in July 2014 under Mourinho.

“The trip to Austria will see the squad based in the market town of Velden in Carinthia, the same southern region as two years ago,” a statement on read.

Conte’s men next face Liverpool on 27th July in Pasadena, before games with Real Madrid and AC Milan on July 30 and August 3, respectively.

The 2016-17 Premier League season starts on August 13.

Last summer it was a shift in approach, with Chelsea’s first preseason friendly coming against New York Red Bulls on July 22, less than three weeks before the start of the Premier League season.

Conte was introduced to his new boys earlier this month and also held a series of individual meetings with the players who reportedly want to leave this summer.

The whole team was really surprised when the Italian arrived at Chelsea’s Cobham training complex along with technical director Michael Emenalo.

The message was clear, he wants to know who is interested in leaving ahead of a potential summer rebuild, and subsequently held meetings with Eden Hazard, John Terry, Nemanja Matic and Diego Costa.

Some of the Chelsea staffs considered it really surprising that Conte turned up after training despite Guus Hiddink still working with the players ahead of Saturday’s trip to Swansea.

However, Antonio Conte is keen to get an early picture in his mind of what he will face prior to concentrating his efforts on guiding Italy at Euro 2016.


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