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David Luiz and Ross Barkley remain out, Kanté, Bakayoko return for Chelsea’s clash against Crystal Palace

Chelsea vs. Crystal Palace, Premier League: Injury news

Chelsea v Manchester City - Premier League Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Moving on from the disheartening 1-0 defeat to Manchester City at the Etihad last weekend, Chelsea are anticipating a rebound against Crystal Palace. Roy Hodgson’s 18th place side “should” be ideal opposition as we search for a return to winning ways, even if they have been a bit of a bogey-team in the last few seasons.

For the match-up, there are some good news with regards to injuries. First and foremost, N’Golo Kanté will be back available for selection after his health scare last weekend ahead the City match.

“N’Golo is fine. He trained the whole week. He’s in good form.

“Last week on Friday it was very cold, and after the training session he briefly passed out in the dressing room. After this situation, the doctor gave him many check-ups to understand his physical condition. It was all clear. On Sunday he was well, but at the same time it was right to not take a risk and give him the opportunity to rest. He’s okay. Every check-up has been okay.”

-Antonio Conte; source: Chelsea FC

Another French midfielder set to return to the fold is Tiemoué Bakayoko. The 23-year-old has been back for several weeks — pretty much since his horrid performance against Watford last month — and been back in training for a week with the team.

And even though it is not usually ideal for a player to be out of contention, Conte sees a silver lining in Bakayoko being sidelined due to injury.

Most importantly, he backs Baka and his “right personality” to push himself into becoming an important player for the club in the future, even if the club are paying the price this season for the lack of experience from some players (e.g. Bakayoko, Christensen).

However, defender David Luiz and midfielder Ross Barkley remain injured. The former with knee and ankle injuries, and the latter with a hamstring issue.

Considering the difficulty of a game versus Palace at Stamford Bridge compared to our opponents right after them in Barcelona at Camp Nou, Conte might fiddle with some rotation and tests. Loads of options to pick as our medical department begins to clear up.

But as long as he picks up a winning line-up, the complaints that were thrown onto his back throughout the week after the City defeat will be nearly zero.


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