Antonio Conte has confirmed Alvaro Morata is a possible selection to play against Roma at Stamford Bridge tomorrow night.
The Spaniard, who missed the weekend game at Crystal Palace having come off during the previous home match, has been training with the squad following a hamstring problem so his potential inclusion in this week’s Champions League outing was a main topic of interest at the manager’s pre-match media conference.
‘I could have taken a risk on Saturday and forced Morata to play against Crystal Palace,’ explained Conte, ‘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.
‘We know very well what our situation is and for sure when there are injuries of this type and to important players, it is very difficult for us,’ he added. ‘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.’
The boss was asked by reporters for further thoughts on the current injuries affecting members of his squad.
‘The problem is that the same players are always playing and also we have in our team players who are not used to playing three games in a week. For Kante it is the first time, for Moses it is the first time, for Morata it is the first time to play regularly with his team. For Alonso it is the same,’ he said, adding the name of the player who was performing media duties with him.
‘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.’
Even so, Conte is welcoming the opportunity to quickly return to winning ways when we host Roma, although he knows it will not be straightforward.
‘For sure it is a good time to play again, above all after two defeats, but we know very well the Champions League is a really tough tournament. I know tomorrow will be difficult because I know Italian football and every team is well-organised. We must pay attention because Roma has a great team and a really good coach.’