Chelsea Manager Antonio Conte will have his star striker Alvaro Morata to call upon once again tomorrow versus Southampton. Speaking at his Friday press conference to preview the weekend clash vs the Saints, Conte said of Morata:
“He’s better. He trained with us two days ago, and also today. He has this pain in his back, but he’s in contention for tomorrow’s game.”
With the Spain international’s return, it’s expected that Conte will switch back to his 3-5-2 formation.
Morata missed Tuesday night’s 3-1 win over Huddersfield Town due to back pain and fatigue, but will be available for selection despite still dealing with some discomfort.
The most expensive player in Blues history heads into the weekend with 12 goals and four assists in 21 appearances on the season. Recently, reports surfaced that he has been watching Didier Drogba DVDs, at studying the club legend’s moves.
While Alvaro Morata returns, Conte also revealed that David Luiz is out with a serious knee injury (go here for more on this).
The schedule makers handed Chelsea nine games in the month of December, and Conte has not been shy about expressing his discontent with the excessive workload. He’s even claimed there is a conspiracy against him.
Additionally, the Blues had another game on the penultimate day of November, giving the reigning Premier League champions 10 games in a 32 day stretch.
With this workload, they need all the healthy bodies they can get. Conte has conceded the league title, very bluntly, on more than one occasion, but they still have the top four to play for, and it’s a tightly contested race.
Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington Times, NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes regularly to WGN CLTV and the Tribune company’s blogging community Chicago Now.
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