Antonio Conte has selected Alvaro Morata in his matchday squad as Chelsea prepare to host AS Roma at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday.
Chelsea will look to create some headway between them and the chasing pack in Group C of the UEFA Champions League when they play hosts to AS Roma at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. As the Blues bid to continue their perfect start in Europe, Antonio Conte has been boosted by the availability of his star striker.
Alvaro Morata looks to have made a timely return to fitness, with his side starting to struggle in his absence. The Spaniard has completed his recovery from a minor hamstring injury, and is available for selection against Roma, as Conte confirmed in his pre-match press conference.
“I could have taken a risk on Saturday and forced Morata to play against Crystal Palace, but I am not so stupid because this situation is very difficult. You have to make the best decision and tomorrow, I am not taking a risk if Morata plays.”
Alvaro Morata is back in training. pic.twitter.com/JWgQjjIp9G
— Antonio Conte (@Contelogic) October 15, 2017
The injury woes haven’t eased completely though, with Victor Moses the latest player on the treatment table after hobbling off on the weekend against Crystal Palace. The Nigerian international is likely to be sidelined for four weeks, so Davide Zappacosta should continue in his absence.
Meanwhile, N’Golo Kante (hamstring) and Danny Drinkwater (calf) are unavailable as well, meaning Cesc Fabregas and Tiemoue Bakayoko should continue at the heart of midfield. Conte, though, chose to reflect on the absence of some key players and the size of his squad.
“It is very difficult for us. But there is this situation and we must be very good to overcome it and to try to do our best, but for sure it is not simple when you don’t have players like Morata or Kante, or now Moses. Three important players.”
“When you have a lot of games you need to rotate players, and if this is not possible, I have to take a risk. And then, for example against Manchester City, Morata after 20 minutes is injured. But If I don’t put Morata in the starting 11 people would tell me I am crazy. Instead sometimes the players they need to rest.”
Meanwhile, Eusebio Di Francesco, too, has a number of injury concerns at hand, with Kostas Manolas (thigh), Emerson Palmieri (knee), Gregoire Defrel (thigh) and Patrik Schick (hamstring) ruled out for the trip to London. But, Kevin Strootman and Stephan El Shaarawy have returned to ease the Roma manager’s troubles.