Date published: Saturday 30th July 2016 2:48

Nemanja Matic says he is delighted to know that he remains a firm part of Antonio Conte’s plans at Chelsea.

Matic received more criticism than most as Chelsea finished tenth last season, the Serbian struggling for long periods of the season.

Conte’s former club Juventus have been linked with a move for Matic, filling the space left by Paul Pogba’s probable departure.

However, Matic has stated his desire to remain at Stamford Bridge.

“What he said gave me a special feeling,” Matic said.

“It was important for me to know I am a big part of his plans. I was happy to hear that.

“Like every player here, I have a good relationship with the manager. I respect what he said about me and of course I liked what I heard.

“I have been at the club for two and a half years and have always given my best every day

“Until I am here, I will continue to give everything to the team.”

Last week, Conte insisted that rumours linking Matic with a move away from Chelsea were nonsense:

“He is not for sale and I know with work he can become a fantastic midfielder, one of the best in the world.

“He is a very important player for me, he is very important in my idea of football. He knows this and I’m delighted by his attitude and behaviour and I see in him commitment.”