'Batshuayi is ready to start' - Conte backs Chelsea striker

Danny Drinkwater

"I hope to have him back for the Roma game (in the Champions League)", Conte said of Kante.

"For sure, it is not simple to play without N'Golo because he is an important player for us", he told reporters.

"Last season was very hard for him, but it was also hard for me".

"[Danny] Drinkwater is nearly ready and Kante is at the stage nearly to come back with us".

It had been thought that Kante could be set to make a return for Chelsea's trip to Bournemouth in the Premier League on Saturday evening.

"The only problem is that we should score more goals".

As per the Metro, Conte gave us more detail of Kante's injury in a press conference this afternoon.


The Belgium global has shown a good deal more promise in the early weeks of this campaign, scoring seven times in 11 matches, and played a key role off the bench as Chelsea beat Watford last weekend. He reacted angrily to reports that Chelsea were looking to replace him with his friend Carlo Ancelotti or Napoli's Maurizio Sarri.

Regarding the reports involving Holland, Conte said: "A lot of b*******".

"It is not correct and I hate this type of situation". This is true. If I look at the past, I see it happened the same with the other managers.

"Don't forget that season we won [the title] but not one person predicted this at the start of the season of our squad after our transfer window". We have three points and we move on.

"I don't think we hurt them, we didn't stretch their back five and a poor touch here and there stopped us".

"It is not easy".

Antonio Conte's men will need to build on their 4-2 win over Watford last week to stay within striking distance of league leaders Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham.

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