Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has confirmed that Tiémoué Bakayoko is unlikely to feature in the Champions League next week as the Blues start to prepare for Barcelona's visit to Stamford Bridge.

By 90Min
February 17, 2018

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has confirmed that Tiémoué Bakayoko is unlikely to feature in the Champions League next week as the Blues start to prepare for Barcelona's visit to Stamford Bridge.

The Italian also confirmed that Marcos Alonso will return after missing Chelsea's last two league games through injury, with the former Real Madrid academy star rested in their FA Cup victory against Hull City on Friday.

January signing Emerson Palmieri was brought into the first-team against the Tigers and played a crucial part in setting up Olivier Giroud for Chelsea's fourth goal of the game. However, Alonso will be drafted back in when Ernesto Valverde's high-flying Barca travel to west London.

"Alonso is ready to play," Conte confirmed after Chelsea's 4-0 victory over Hull, as quoted by ESPN. "He is fit, but I don't think Bakayoko [will be].

"I'm very happy. Before an important game, against Barcelona, I go to my house with many doubts in my mind, [about] which is the best starting XI to start the game. But it's right to be so. We must take the right time to make the best decision to pick the best XI to start that game."

With Conte confirming that Bakayoko is unlikely to make the Blues' Champions League squad on Tuesday, it's fair to say that Chelsea fans are very happy that the 23-year-old won't feature against the Blaugrana.

The former Monaco midfielder has struggled to adapt to life in the Premier League following his £36m move and Bakayoko is a player who is seriously low on confidence after receiving a red card in Chelsea's 4-1 defeat to Watford at the start of February.

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