Antonio Conte believes Wednesday’s win over AC Milan has helped him judge some of the talents available to him in the squad.
The manager was speaking after watching substitute Oscar net a second-half double, sealing us victory in the opening event at the US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
Bertrand Traore had put us in front with a close-range header before Milan levelled late in the first half through a Giacomo Bonaventura free-kick, but we regained the lead when Oscar converted a penalty after Andrea Poli handled, and the Brazilian put a gloss on the scoreline with a low right-footed finish a few minutes before full-time.
‘Oscar is an important player and I think the season when Chelsea won the title, he played a fantastic season,’ Conte said. ‘Last season was bad for all the players, not only for Oscar or for another player, for all.
‘I think Oscar is a good player with a great talent and he can improve a lot. I am seeing in him a good attitude and a good will.
‘I think this match told me a lot - about the players who keep and who can go on loan or we can sell. Today, it was important because I have a more clear idea than before.
‘Now we go back to London and it’s important for me, for the club, to talk and take the decision about all the players. In this pre-season we work with 30 players, four goalkeepers and 26 players. A lot of players. Now remains one game against Werder Bremen and then we must take the decision.
‘We hope to take the best decision for the club and the players also. The ideas are very clear, but it’s important for me to speak about this topic with the club.’
The coach was also asked for his take on the evening, a special one for our hosts at the US Bank Stadium.
‘The atmosphere was fantastic, wonderful,’ he smiled. ‘It’s fantastic to play in this atmosphere for me and the players.
‘The grass was very good, better than the last game against Real Madrid. I must be honest, against Real Madrid the field wasn’t good. Tonight was beautiful, all beautiful.’
Conte has one more game to assess his squad before a full week of training back in England. Local supporters can see the team train at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday. You can find out more here.