Chelsea boss Antonio Conte spoke before the important EFL Cup derby against Southampton, first of all he was asked about players’ fitness:
“Terry is fit to start, he’s in a good shape, tomorrow I will decide the starting line up, but John is fit, he trained very well and he is ready.
“We know that this surely a tough game, against a big rival like West Ham, we played them in the league and I remember it was a tough game, all the players are ready to play a good game, I hope to see a good atmosphere, in England the atmosphere is fantastic during the games
“Ivanovic is better, he trained with squad yesterday and today, he needs a bit of time to be fit, Fabregas is not still well, we must wait because he had a muscular problem, we must patient because it was in his thigh, I hope to see him in the team.
“I’m pleased Zouma played yesterday, he’s a young player and he’s really good, I hope to see him really soon, I hope he will start to work with us, I am very happy he played with the U23, he had good answer after the game yesterday and we were pleased for this.”
The manager continued to analyse tomorrow’s game:
“For us the EFL Cup is an important competition, this cup can let you see some players that are working very well and normally don’t start, you can see the development of these players, in this season we just have this cup and Fa Cup to see other players, so tomorrow probably we will see some changes.”
Asked about what happened with Mourinho at the final whistle on the touchline he said:
“I think in this moment is not important to talk again about a game that for me, the players and the club is the past, Manchester United is the past, now it’s important to be very focused on tomorrow’s game, I think we played a good game, with a good intensity, now it’s important to continue. We have to build something important for the present and for the future
“I think that everyone must show respect for me, for my work, I think that in every game I show myself, I have a history, and you can see it also in my past, this was my behavior on the touchline, I am a passionate man, I want to play with the players and help them, but I always show respect for other teams and clubs, and my history speaks for me.”
Conte spoke also about Chelsea youngsters and possible turnover:
“I think new players are coming up, it’s important for the coach to have players with different carachteriscs, we played with different systems this seasons, after two bad defeats against Liverpool and Arsenal I decided to change because the situation wasn’t good for us, for this reason we play with this system, the important thing is to understand the right principles, to play the ball quick, to stay compact, short, then the system is not important.
“Yesterday it was not easy to shout because I lost my voice, but now I am recovering.
“Willian is recovering, he’s in a good moment now, he’s a very good man, we love him, the players and I, and he is ready to play.
“Bathsuayi is a young player, he can do great improvement, he’s working very well, he started two games with us, I have full confidence in him and I am sure that if Michy will play, he will play a good game
“When you are in a great team and you have the chance to work with great players you can learn a lot, he’s a got a great potential, both physically and technically
“Tammy Abraham, is another young player that has got a future in Chelsea, I saw him only one week in the USA in the pre-season, then we decided to loan him to play more, he’s a got great potential, the academy is working very well. Now it’s early to speak about the next season. We got many young players in the squad, academy players like Chalobah, Ola Aina, Solanke and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.”
ChelseaNews24 asked Conte how many of these players can play tomorrow night:
“Tomorrow we want to win, this message is important, if I will plays some youngsters is not to give them a gift but because I really trust them
“West Ham had some difficulties at the start of this championship but now, after two wins the confidence is high, if I see their squad I see they got very good players, I know some of them very well like Zaza and Ogbonna, I know their manager how he works, I got a lot of respect for them I remember a tough game when we played in the PL.”