Victor Moses is in line to return for Chelsea against Bournemouth today – a match that manager Antonio Conte believes will be a “great challenge” for the Premier League leaders. PHOTO:AFP
• Conte Warns Of ‘Great Challenge’ At Bournemouth
Victor Moses is in line to return for Chelsea against Bournemouth today – a match that manager Antonio Conte believes will be a “great challenge” for the Premier League leaders.
A calf injury kept Moses out of the shock 2-1 defeat to Crystal Palace last Saturday and the 2-1 win over Manchester City on Wednesday. Conte experimented with Pedro at the right wing-back position against Palace before moving Cesar Azpilicueta into the role for the visit of Pep Guardiola’s men, with Kurt Zouma returning to the centre of the defence.
And, although he hopes to have Moses fully fit for the match at Vitality Stadium, Conte has praised his squad for ensuring that the loss of regular members of the starting line-up has not been damaging to their title charge.
Asked about Moses’ fitness, Conte told a news conference: “He trained with us. I have to check his situation and then make the best decision for the team. But he is available.
“Victor Moses showed this season that he is an important player for us, but in the games against Crystal Palace and City we showed that we can play without him. “We are a team, not 11 single players. If you think you can win a game with only one player, you are in trouble, because if you miss this player then it’s impossible to win.
“I’m pleased when this happens because it means every single player is into our football. During the training sessions, I have 20 players and I train them in the same way, because I know that anything can happen during the season and you must have players available.
“I think Zouma showed this in a tough game against a great team.” Tottenham will have the chance to close to within four points of the Premier League leaders before they kick off against Bournemouth, but Conte feels Spurs’ result will have little impact on what is set to be a difficult game for his side.
“I don’t think it’s an advantage [to play earlier],” Conte said. “If they win, lose or draw, it’s the same. It’s important to look at ourselves. Tottenham’s result is important but ours is the most important.
“I see two teams, Chelsea and Tottenham, in this [title] race. But anything can happen. There are 24 points and other rivals can get into this race.