Antonio Conte press conference live: Chelsea boss on transfers, Leicester City & Diego Costa

The Premier League is back after the international break and Chelsea travel to Leicester City tomorrow looking to get their third straight win.

With the transfer window finally closed the Blues have their squad set for the first half of the season with Danny Drinkwater and Davide Zappacosta coming in on deadline day.

Along with Tiemoue Bakayoko, Antonio Rudiger, Alvaro Morata and Willy Caballero, Chelsea will be looking to compete on all four fronts and have won their previous two Premier League matches.

The Blues are back in action and Antonio Conte is speaking to the press ahead of the game at the Foxes, and will no doubt be answering questions over whether Danny Drinkwater will make an appearance against his former side.

Meanwhile, Diego Costa’s future is still up in the air having not secured his move to Chelsea’s Champions League rivals Atletico Madrid, but was named in the Blues’ Premier League squad.

Zappacosta

He is a good player, a young player. He can improve. He is a wing back, sometimes he can play on the left. He is ready and you will see very soon his performance. This is a great chance, he arrives in a great club and can go into this club with the right mentality. Torino is a good team with a great history. There is good pressure there, but to play in another country is not easy. But he has the right characteristics.

Harry Maguire like John Terry?

He has the right characteristic to play in the national team. TO compare Maguire and John is very difficult. He played a lot of games for the national team and was a legend of Chelsea.

How difficult will Leicester be?

Two seasons ago they won the title. I think this season I watched their previous game and saw a team very strong. They lost a game against Arsenal and at the end we must pay great attention. When you have Vardy and Mahrez you must pay great attention. Great experience with Morgan and Fuchs.

September a big month?

You have to analyse every game and try to have a plan in your mind. YOu know very well it is very important to analyse game by game. After Leicester I don’t know if there are injuries/suspensions or not. You have to be good to prepare, and then change. You have to prepare game by game.

Costa, frustrating it’s still going?

When you are a manager you must be prepared to face this situation. Sometimes it’s easy, sometimes difficult. Every manager has great experience to deal with it.

Got what you want with your squad?

It is difficult to answer, you have to wait until the end of the season and then you see. The club did their best and now it’s time to work with these players and I’m very happy to work with the players we have. It’s time to be focused. The window is closed.

Hazard playing, disappointed?

No. I spoke with Roberto and we tried the right way to improve his fitness. I was very happy for him to play against Gibraltar and 30 minutes against Greece. I totally agreed with him.

How Barkley was ridiculous?

What I read was ridiculous.

Momentum this weekend

For us it was a good moment to stop. The international break has allowed us to recover the players and to work with the players. Now, tomorrow it is important to start well. We have 7 games in 21 days and must be prepared.

Change of transfer window

I agree this decision. It is a good decision. If you have a plan that it is very clear, it is not important to wait. If you decide these players stay and remain there is no problem to this. In Italy the views are the same. The transfer market is difficult for the coach, you wait for new players and you sometimes lose the players. I don’t love this period. If it’s short then it’s good.
(Next season) If you have a correct plan I don’t see a problem. If you wait until the end you could have a problem. If you have a problem or plan then there shouldn’t be a problem.

Progress with Costa?

No. No news. (Turkey) My focus is English football, not Turkey.

Frustrating window?

I think the club tried to do their best in the market. Sometimes you are able to buy, sometimes you can’t. The club tried to do their best.

Ross Barkley, what happened?

I don’t like to speak about players in other teams. It is ridiculous what I read. It is ridiculous.

Zappacosta

He played against Israel, shows he is in good condition. I worked with him and he knows my style of football. For him it is more simple for him to adapt our style.

Danny Drinkwater

Danny, we are working with him and trying to make him in the best physical condition. It is normal when the transfer window, when you go into another team it’s not simple. He is a good buy for us, he has improved his condition and in the squad for the Leicester game but I don’t know when he is ready to play.

Hazard update

Now he is available, he is in the list for the squad. He is improving a lot, he is working very strong to be ready. Now I can count on him. I have to decide the right minutes, but he is available now.
When there is a bad injury and surgery, it is normal to pay attention to his recovery. Don’t forget he is an important player for us, to play soon.

Injuries?

No injury problems. Some can be tired, but that is normal. All the players are available. I’m happy for this.

4 Comments

  1. Mr. Conte is a good talker. He says the right things. The results we have yet to see.what about Rudiger? I think he’s better in the position of our Vice Captain.

    • he is very good in talking, but in the case of vice captain for Rudiger, it is too early to give him that great opportunity to lead the team as a vice captain, there are other players there , who are capable enough to earn that post for now, as i say he is good , but now may not be the suitable time for him to take that position.

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