Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has ruled out Alvaro Morata and Andreas Christensen from his side’s match day squad to face Watford in the English Premier League at the Vircarage Road on Monday.
Morata has missed the Blues’ last three games due to a back problem, while Christensen was withdrawn in the first half of Chelsea’s 3-0 home defeat to Bournemouth on Wednesday through injury.
“Alvaro is still out,” Conte said during his pre-match conference on Friday.
“He has a problem in his back, he’s missing a lot of games and that’s not a good situation for him, for me or for the team. But I hope in the future we can solve this problem and I hope to have him back soon.
“For Christensen, his first exam on his injury was positive but we have to wait, but for sure he’s out against Watford.
“I then have to check a couple of situations before the game. Today is Friday and we have a couple of days to check on these players before we play Watford on Monday.”
The Italian also revealed that the pair of Olivier Giroud and Emerson Palmieri will be introduced into the squad gradually.
The duo arrived at Stamford Bridge before the window closed – from Arsenal and Roma respectively.
“We have to wait because don’t forget, especially with Palmieri, we are talking about a player who is coming back from a bad injury and has only played one game in the Italian cup,” Conte explained.
“Olivier was out for 50 days or so with a muscular injury before he played against Swansea [for Arsenal]. We have to get these players in to the best physical condition and then work with them to get them used to our way of playing.
“Giroud we are starting to work with him but we have to check his physical condition, but it won’t be easy to see him from the start against Watford.”
Conte also claimed he is not interested in the vacant Italy job and that he wants to see out the remaining 18 months of his contract.
The Chelsea boss was named among the candidates for the Azzuri national side by the Italian FA.
“I can tell that Costacurta is a friend and we played together in the national team in 1994. Maybe he forgot that I still have 18 months left on this contract and I intend to respect this contract,” the former Juventus manager added.
“The speculation doesn’t affect me. I hope you are starting to know me. This season always the same.
“A lot of pressure. I ask myself why. This is Chelsea – this is the only answer. The pressure is normal. For me the pressure is life
“If I stay without pressure, I don’t like. I like to have pressure. I like this sort of station. No pressure is not good for me, not good for the players.”Unblock the FIFA World Cup with ExpressVPN the #1 Trusted Name in VPN