The arrivals of Danny Drinkwater and Tiemoue Bakayoko have given Chelsea a better tactical option in big games, says Antonio Conte.
Over the summer the reigning Premier League champions sold Nemanja Matic to Manchester United, but signed Drinkwater from Leicester and Bakayoko from Monaco.
They’ve bolstered the central midfield options at Chelsea, with N’Golo Kante and Cesc Fabregas also at Conte’s disposal.
The Chelsea manager has explained how the new arrivals have given him more options – and how they can help Eden Hazard to excel.
‘Compared to last season, we changed players. We bought two central midfielders, Bakayoko and Drinkwater,’ the Italian told Chelseafc.com.
‘For the characteristics of our players, to play with three midfielders is a good option. For me to be able to alternate two different systems, 3-4-3 and 3-5-2, is great.
‘When we play against a big team, it’s very important to have more solidity with the three midfielders and two strikers, and to give more freedom to Eden.’
The Blues look certain to lose their title to Manchester City this season, but recent good form has seen them move up to second in the table.
They beat Stoke City 5-0 on Saturday with Drinkwater playing alongside Kante, with the former scoring a brilliant long-range goal.