Conte: Chelsea have a problem now Alonso is banned

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Antonio Conte has admitted that Marcos Alonso being suspended leaves Chelsea with a problem ahead of the EFL Cup game against Bournemouth.

Alonso was the Blues’ hero against Southampton at Stamford Bridge, where he produced an outstanding performance and scored the winner with a brilliant free-kick.

However, a yellow card the Spaniard picked up was his fifth of the season, meaning he must now serve a ban and will be unavailable for Wednesday’s quarter-final.

And Davide Zappacosta, who came on as a late substitute against Southampton and has previously filled in for Alonso on the left, is a doubt for the Bournemouth game because of a recent illness.

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Blues boss Conte explained: “I prefer to have all my players available because now we also have to play a quarter-final.

“Now there is a problem, because Zappacosta is recovering from bad flu. It can happen. We must be ready to overcome this difficulty.”

Conte praised his players after the 1-0 win against the Saints but bemoaned their inability to score a second goal.