Chelsea's Andreas Christensen on learning to live with his mistakes and what the future holds at Stamford Bridge

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It is a measure of Andreas Christensen's increasing high standards that he has been very angry with himself lately.

Most would assume the 22-year-old would be happy with life at the moment as he prepares to face Southampton in the FA Cup semi-final on Sunday.

After all, he's achieved what so many Chelsea trainees have failed to do in the Roman Abramovich era and established himself in the first team this term.

Chelsea have shown their long-term backing for the Denmark international too by handing the silky centre-half a new contract until 2022.

But Christensen's momentum has stalled slightly in recent months as a few high profile errors began creeping into his game.

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It is inevitable that such a young talent might start to feel the strain of a first full season in Chelsea's senior side and criticism has rightly been in short supply.

And yet Christensen isn't willing to make any excuses as he told Standard Sport: "I have been p***** off with myself.

"Every time I go back on the training pitch at the moment, I want to do better. At the same time, when I go home, I don't want to bring my family or partner's mood down.

"I try to relax and be happy, I try not to think about it. I believe it's important not to do that or it will drive you crazy.

"But when I make mistakes, I do get p***** off with myself. It has been a difficult moment for me, but it's not my first.

"I had a little time in Germany when I first got there to start my two-year loan at Borussia Monchengladbach (in 2015).

"I didn't play for five weeks after making mistakes in the first league match (they lost 4-0 to Borussia Dortmund).

"It meant I knew what I had to do this time around and I have tried to cope with it the best way I can."

Chelsea's problems have been well documented this term, but Christensen was consistently the shining light, that is until the 75th minute of the first game against Barcelona in the Champions League.

An errant pass - a real rarity - across his own penalty area was intercepted and Lionel Messi went on to score a morale sapping equaliser.

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Five days later and Manchester United came from behind to beat Chelsea 2-1, with Christensen under scrutiny for both goals.

Then a week later he failed to clear a long pass properly and from the resulting confusion, Manchester City scored the winner.

There have been other examples too, but it is a measure of Christensen's growing maturity that his confidence levels remain untarnished.

He added: "I don't think the mistakes I've made are related in any way. They are all separate from each other.

"Put it this way, after making a mistake in one game I don't feel scared about making another.

"I try to be strong mentally. I will put the team in danger if I'm not sure of myself. I need to stay concentrated the whole time.

"I don't take it in a bad way. I still feel like I've had a great season. I look back on it proudly. I will learn from it and keep moving forward."

(Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Chelsea's former technical director Michael Emenalo will be taking great satisfaction no doubt at seeing Christensen's development even though he left for Monaco in November.

Emenalo became the scapegoat among a large faction of the fanbase for when signings, or even whole season's, went wrong.

Yet the Nigerian was hugely influential in luring Christensen from Brondby ahead of a number of clubs in 2012.

"People from the outside don't always see the whole picture," Christensen said. "For me he did a great job. Sometimes it is easy to say things when you don't know what's going on.

"He was the first one at Chelsea to insist that I signed here. After I joined, he always said his office door was open to me.

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"If he could see I was concerned about something he'd reassure me, just by saying simple things like 'don't worry, the manager can see what you're capable of, just keep doing what you're doing'.

"Those statements helped me keep my head held up high, to keep looking forward and ready for what might happen."

That zeal remains to this day and Christensen certainly can't wait to play on the big stage at Wembley against Southampton.

All the focus has been on the other semi-final between Tottenham and Manchester United, with many suggesting that contest will determine the eventual winners of the competition.

Yet Christensen concluded: "We are going into our game not thinking what anyone else says. We feel comfortable in our position and believe in ourselves.

"I have a winners' medal from the League Cup in 2015 because I made my debut against Shrewsbury in one of the early rounds.

"But this would mean a lot more because I will have played much more of a role. It would be my first trophy where I have played the whole way."

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