Álvaro Morata got off to a great start at Chelsea despite not being fully fit from the summer, scoring goals and providing assists. As the club’s record signing, great things were expected of him and it looked like he would immediately live up them, and then some.
Alas, things aren’t usually that easy. The goals dried up a bit as the weather turned cold and a couple injuries cropped up. While the Azpilicueta-to-Morata connection became an instant hit, Morata struggled mightily in finishing with his feet for a several-game stretch, which coincided (perhaps not coincidentally) with the start of a similar slump in Chelsea’s results in general.
Some of those struggles can probably be attributed to a back injury that Morata has been carrying for at least a couple months and that has kept him out completely for the past month. He has even been seeing a specialist in Germany to try to fix it, though on Friday, Conte was still unsure how long his first-choice striker would be out, expecting anything from a day to the rest of the season.
But in an Instagram comment, of all places, Morata has basically declared himself fit, saying that he is now over his injury. It was a response inspired yet more criticism (as if the knives over the missed chances or random interviews weren’t enough), after he posted an old video of him dancing with his wife.
“It’s old video. I’m not [injured] I’m ok for the game tomorrow. A lot of critics now ... but no problem for me! *wave*”
Gotta love the little wave at the end.
Good morning all Chelsea fans, we had a reply from Alvaro Morata on IG in relation to the video with his wife - he says it's an old video and that he is okay for today's game against West Brom.— ConteTweets (@ConteTweetss) February 12, 2018
He could be in the starting line up tonight or Giroud because he's returning slowly. pic.twitter.com/s2Qjji49I2
This more or less matches a post he made on Instagram over the weekend, which seemed to hint that he was back in training at Chelsea (though unclear whether full training or just light fitness training).
With stories out Spain suggesting that Morata would be back by the Barcelona match in eight days’ time at the latest and hoping to be back by Friday’s game against Hull City, even, it’s looking likely that we’ll be seeing Chelsea’s no.9 back on the pitch sooner rather than later.
As nice it is to have Olivier Giroud on board and perhaps ready to start tonight, it’ll be even better to have Morata as well.