West London Sport

Conte on Morata, Chelsea’s shortage of goals, Crouch, injuries and whether he thinks signings are likely

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte spoke about a number of issues at a media conference ahead of the game against Brighton. Here’s some of what the Italian had to say.

Conte on Chelsea’s injuries

“I have to check a couple of other situations for tomorrow’s game and Cahill and Fabregas are out.”

On Ross Barkley

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“I think Ross is in good physical condition. He played 70 minutes in a friendly game and for tomorrow he is in the squad – he is coming with us for the game against Brighton.

“I don’t know if during the game I will give him a chance to play part of the game or if I want to wait if the game doesn’t ask for this type of situation.

“He is in the squad and he has to continue to improve and to continue to work with us.”

On facing Brighton

“We have to pay great attention. Brighton are a good team with a really good coach.

“We are playing a game in only two days at 12.30 and many players played 120 minutes against Norwich. We must be focused. it won’t be easy and we must be ready.”

On being linked with Edin Džeko and Peter Crouch

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“As you know very well, I think it is not right to talk about players of another team.

“There is a transfer market in this period and if something happens you are the first to know the news.

“I am not interested in this conversation, also because it is disrespectful for my players and for the player of another club.”

On whether he wants to bring in a target man

“In this moment I can talk about my players, not talk about the characteristics of other players.”

On who has the final say on transfers

“This is our situation. The club has to spend money and it is right to spend in the way it wants.

“It is not right to talk about a person but right to talk in general about the club.

“I was very clear in the past that the club sometimes ask me my opinion about our transfer market and situation and the way we can improve.

“But at the same time the final decision is for the club.”

On whether he is confident signings will be made

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“Confident is a big word. We have to wait. I give my opinion to my club but the final decision is for the club and I have to wait and see what happens.

“I am very calm because I am working with my players in the right way and I am very happy for the commitment of my players. If the club wants to help we are happy, otherwise we continue in this way.”

On recent results

“In the last period we drew many times but at the same time there is a good aspect because we are unbeaten for many games.

“For sure we want three points in every game but you have to score to win. In the last couple of weeks we were also a bit unlucky but we were not so accurate in our finishing.

On Chelsea’s lack of goals

“It is very difficult to have a good response to this question. In every game we created many chances to score and this is the most important thing for us.

“We must be honest and maybe our finishing could be better in our quality.”

On Alvaro Morata

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“For Alvaro this is the first season he is having a full season and maybe it is the first time to face these types of problems.

“He has to work for the team and not lose confidence because the coach, the players. the club and supporters trust him.

“He has to learn to face this situation, to go forward and move on because everyone in Chelsea trusts him.”

On Morata’s sending-off against Norwich

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“The player knows very well his mistake. It was frustration for the first yellow card because the player didn’t deserve this yellow card [for diving]. If the referee doesn’t want to concede a penalty, it is not right to book him.

“But Morata must learn to control himself because the second yellow card was for dissent. I agree with the player for the first yellow card but not for the second yellow card.

“He has to overcome this problem because it is a stupid problem.”

On Morata and Pedro being suspended

“For sure this is another problem and in this part of the season – this is a big problem.

“Now we have to change the plan. Anything can happen and for sure I have to change my plan.”

On VAR

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“I like this new system. It can help to reduce referees’ mistake and if you can use the system in the right way it can help to have a game without big mistakes.

“This is a good opportunity but they have to improve a lot to use this system because the way they are using now is not correct.

“They have to see the other countries that are using the system, like Italy who are using it since the start of the season. In Italy a lot of people are very happy with the system.”