But ahead of Chelsea’s trip to West Ham in the EFL Cup tomorrow, Mikel has expressed his desire to get back into the team.
“I hope I will get some playing time against West Ham, but it is down to the manager,” he told the Evening Standard.
“Antonio Conte has been open and honest with me. I respect him for that”
Chelsea midfielder John Obi Mikel on Antonio Conte
“He has been open and honest with me. I respect him for that. He has explained the situation and I totally understand.
“When you have been at a club for a long time, these things happen where a club wants to move forward.
“I just have to be professional, work as hard as I can to try and get into the team. I work twice as hard every day and it’s because I appreciate this club.
“I have been here a long time, have a lot of trophies and memories that will never go away. If I don’t get back in the side, I will respect it.
“I always respect the football club’s decision. The club is more important than me.”