Antonio Conte sends clear message to Chelsea fans about Eden Hazard ahead of Atletico trip

Antonio Conte hints that Eden Hazard could start for Chelsea in their crunch clash against Atletico Madrid on Wednesday

eden hazard
Chelsea star Eden Hazard Photo: Nike

Antonio Conte has told Chelsea fans that Eden Hazard could be in line to start for the Blues in their Champions League clash with Atletico Madrid on Wednesday night.

The Belgian playmaker has been gradually working his way back towards full fitness at Chelsea after recovering from a serious ankle injury.

Conte has been patient with Hazard’s recovery and the playmaker has still not started a game in the Premier League for the west London club.

Hazard came on to play the final 18 minutes of Chelsea’s 4-0 thrashing of Stoke City in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.

Now, it remains to be seen whether Conte will call on Hazard for the Blues’ clash with Atletico Madrid in Spain on Wednesday night.

Conte has confirmed that the 26-year-old is in good physical shape but stopped short of revealing whether Hazard would start for Chelsea on Wednesday night.

Conte told Chelsea’s website: “I think now Eden is improving a lot and for sure he’s in contention for Atletico Madrid.

“After a bad injury and surgery you need time. He’s almost ready to play but if I make this decision it will be because I’m comfortable with it.

“I think we are managing him very well. Other players are also very important for us and now it’s important to be sure he’s ready.”

Chelsea head into the game looking to build on their impressive 6-0 thrashing of Qarabag in their Champions League opener earlier this month.

The west London side are aiming to impress in this season’s Champions League, after having missed out on a place in Europe altogether last season.

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