Chelsea Boss Antonio Conte Hints at Morata & Batshuayi Partnership Ahead of Community Shield
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has hinted that he could start both Alvaro Morata and Michy Batshuayi together for Sunday's Community Shield encounter against Arsenal - due to Eden Hazard being unavailable.
As the season draws ever closer, the Community Shield is often viewed as the traditional curtain raiser for the Premier League - pitting the previous season's league champions against the winners of the FA Cup.
This year, league victors Chelsea face FA Cup winners Arsenal - and Antonio Conte seems to be prepared to mix up his side in the absence of star man Hazard.
"When you have Hazard injured, i don't think there are any other options." said Conte in his press conference (via the Evening Standard) when asked about fielding both Batshuayi and Morata.
"We have only Willian so I tried this combination. It could be an option for me but Alvaro wants to play like a No.9 but he could play like a No.10."
When quizzed on how Conte expects the game against Arsenal will go, the Italian admitted that he expects a "really good game" from his players:
"A friendly game but it's the first trophy of the season so it's an important game. Chelsea and Arsenal are not in the best form because we are in the first part of the season. But, for sure, we want to play a really good game."
With Neymar's recent move to Paris Saint-Germain, tentative rumours have linked Eden Hazard with a switch to Camp Nou, but the Chelsea boss has ruled out such an occurrence.
"We are trying to buy not sell! Eden is happy to stay with us and play for us." He said.
Alongside Hazard, new signing Tiemoue Bakayoko is set to miss the Community Shield match as well as Victor Moses - who will also miss Chelsea's trip to Burnley.