Pedro Hands Chelsea Community Shield Fitness Boost After Facial Injury Lay Off
Chelsea have received a fitness boost ahead of their Community Shield contest against Arsenal after Pedro resumed full training following a facial injury.
The forward sustained multiple fractures to his face after colliding with Gunners goalkeeper David Ospina in the Blues' 3-0 friendly win in Beijing, and had been expected to be out for a few weeks.
However, Chelsea's official social media accounts - including Instagram - revealed that Pedro has returned to training ahead of schedule, with a protective mask allowing him to train alongside his team-mates at their club's Cobham base.
The 28-year-old's timely return will be the perfect tonic for Conte ahead of the 2017/18 curtain raiser at Wembley.
The Italian is already without talisman Eden Hazard for many more weeks or months as the Belgian flier continues to recover from a broken ankle picked up on international duty in June, while summer recruit Alvaro Morata is not fit enough to start against Arsene Wenger's men in Sunday's showdown.
Pedro was taken to hospital in China after his sickening collision with Ospina at the Bird's Nest stadium on 22nd July amid fears that he had suffered concussion during the clash.
The Spain international was holed up in the Far East as he continued his recovery while the rest of Conte's charges flew back to the UK, but he has now rejoined his fellow stars and could be in line to feature for the reigning top flight champions.
Summer arrivals Tiemoue Bakayoko and Antonio Rudiger could also make their senior competitive debuts for Chelsea if the pair are physically and mentally prepared to do so, but Conte will allow them more time to reach peak condition if they are not ready for Sunday.