Chelsea secured their passage to the latter stages of the Champions League with a resounding 4-0 win in Azerbaijan. With Atletico Madrid beating Roma in the Group C’s other fixture, the Blues cashed in and can secure top spot in the group with a win over Atletico at Stamford Bridge on match day six.
European football is back on the agenda for Antonio Conte’s Chelsea, who make their longest-ever Champions League away trip as they head to Azerbaijan to face FK Qarabag. The home side have adapted to life in Europe’s premier club competition well after a difficult start. The Blues sit second in Group C, one point behind group leaders Roma and can secure their qualification for the knockout stages if with a win – provided other results go their way.
Antonio Conte’s Chelsea returned from the international break in style with a resounding 4-0 thumping of Tony Pulis’ struggling West Bromwich Albion side at the Hawthorns. With a crucial period of domestic and European football on the horizon for the Blues, they will have been delighted with their performance in a notoriously tricky fixture.
Despite Chelsea’s slow start to the campaign, they had plenty first-team players on international duty as two more Blues confirmed their places at next year’s World Cup in Russia this week.
With the Premier League back on the agenda following the international break, Antonio Conte will be hoping Chelsea’s hard-fought win over Manchester United last time out, can be the catalyst to his charges’ pursuit of Manchester City. The Blues sit nine points behind Pep Guardiola’s high flyers and need to close the gap as quickly as possible.
Alvaro Morata was signed by Chelsea in the summer from Real Madrid in a deal amounting to around £60 million and he has hit the ground running in the Premier League. The Spanish centre-forward has already managed seven goals in the top flight since the beginning of the campaign. Despite a hamstring injury that kept him out for three weeks, only Harry Kane and Sergio Aguero have found the net more.
However, it is his off-the-field exploits that have been picked up by the media in the last few days as he brilliantly admitted to Cadena Ser that he enjoys a beer on the way home after home matches! The 25-year-old claimed that after they have won a game at Stamford Bridge, he will walk home (without his Chelsea tracksuit for obvious reasons) drinking a beer. While I’m sure that Antonio Conte doesn’t approve of his star striker’s drinking habit, the Chelsea fans absolutely love it!
After this story becomes headline news, there’s no doubt there will be hundreds of Blues fans waiting on Fulham Road after successful home matches looking for a tall bloke with a beer in his hand. The former Real Madrid man also said that he wears a hat when walking home; not just for disguise, but also because he finds the English climate much colder than in his home country of Spain – who can blame him?
Morata has returned to the Chelsea side after the injury he sustained away at Crystal Palace and with a goal and an assist in his last two games, it’s as if he was never injured. While his side have had a below-par start to the new term, he has been brilliant and will need to keep up this top form if Conte’s side are to push for another Premier League title. After the international break, it’s a trip to the Hawthorns as the Blues face West Brom and he will be desperate to get on the scoresheet once again. Have a pint on us, Alvaro!
Chelsea returned to the top four in the Premier League with a hard-fought victory over former manager Jose Mourinho’s side. The pressure was very much on the Blues following a poor result in the Champions League but Antonio Conte’s men delivered when it mattered.
Antonio Conte will be desperate to see his side get back to winning ways against a Watford side that sit two points above Chelsea in the Premier League table.
Eden Hazard bagged a brace as Chelsea drew 3-3 with Italian giants Roma at Stamford Bridge in a topsy-turvy Champions League encounter. The Blues initially led 2-0 before being pegged back to 2-3 in the second half, before the Belgian salvaged a crucial point for Antonio Conte’s men.
Chelsea travel across London later looking to inflict yet more misery on lowly Crystal Palace and get their season back on track. The Blues struggled to cope with Manchester City’s all-action approach last time out, and with injuries to N’Golo Kante and Alvaro Morata, Antonio Conte will have to introduce some of his squad players against Roy Hodgson’s men.
Fresh from his maiden Ballon d’Or nomination, N’Golo Kante has suffered a hamstring injury on international duty with France, leaving Antonio Conte desperately searching for positives.
At first glance, the international break couldn’t have come at a better time for Chelsea, with the Blues still reeling from being completely outplayed in the 1-0 defeat to Manchester City. Record signing Alvaro Morata limped off in the first half of the loss with what has been confirmed as a month-long hamstring injury, with Kante’s issue heightening the ill-feeling around the Bridge even further this week.
Early season beset with injuries
For much of last season, Chelsea were blessed by a lack of injuries within the squad, a situation that allowed Conte to retain a familiar side on a weekly basis in the Premier League. This term, however, has posed different problems, with Eden Hazard missing the first month of the new campaign through an ankle injury and new signing Danny Drinkwater yet to be fit enough to feature for his new employers.
The squad’s relatively clean bill of health was cited by most observers as a major factor in the Blues winning the title last term, along with the absence of any European football. Indeed, having a larger fixture list already looks to be taking its toll on the squad this term.
Kante didn’t feature in the 5-1 demolition of Nottingham Forest but has still played 12 games in 56 days – a greatly increased workload on last season – and his all-action approach looks to have got the better of him momentarily. Morata’s injury is similar in nature and the Blues medical staff will be sincerely hoping that the increased amount of injuries is nothing to do with the training methods used by the staff at Cobham.
Morata and Kante have been the two star performers for Chelsea already this season and replacing both of them would be a huge challenge for Conte. Injuries are inevitable and squads are built to fight on four fronts – which is something Chelsea are looking to do this campaign.
During his time in the Premier League, Antonio Conte has shown himself to be an innovative coach that can deal with the ever-changing environment of English football. Whilst he and the Chelsea faithful will be praying Kante and Morata’s injuries are not as serious as they first appear, finding a tactical answer to the problem could be the Italian’s biggest test to date at Stamford Bridge.
The 2016-17 Premier League season heralded one of the most successful seasons in Chelsea Football Club’s history.
In the aftermath of the defeat to Manchester City, Chelsea’s week goes from bad to worse as record signing Alvaro Morata is set to be sidelined for a month.
Alvaro Morata faces a layoff of up to two months after suffering a grade two hamstring injury in the Blues’ defeat to Manchester City on Saturday.
Former Blues’ striker Fernando Torres has praised Alvaro Morata’s strong start to life at Stamford Bridge, proclaiming the Chelsea forward to be “one of the best” in the world.
Alvaro Morata is not simply keeping up with the Premier League’s leading goal scorers, he is actually the deadliest of them all so far this season, according to the stats book.
Chelsea cruised to a 4-0 victory against Stoke City at the bet365 Stadium yesterday thanks to an Alvaro Morata hat-trick.
Chelsea’s club-record signing Alvaro Morata has explained why he chose the Blues over other high-profile clubs such as Manchester United this summer.
Chelsea have requested that Blues fans stop singing “unacceptable” chants about new signing Alvaro Morata. The announcement comes as the FA confirmed it is to investigate reports of antisemitic language during the side’s 2-1 victory away at Leicester this weekend.