The champions came from behind to beat Watford 4-2 at Stamford Bridge last weekend, but Antonio Conte’s defence has been leaking goals of late as they struggle to match the form of last season.
The Blues already trail League leaders Manchester City by nine points heading into the weekend clash against Eddie Howe’s Cherries.
While the title race is far from over, Chelsea can ill-afford to add to their three defeats if they are to mount a realistic defence of their crown.
How to follow
The match will be televised live in the UK on BT Sport 1.
Follow all the action with Standard Sport’s live blog!
THE ROUND UP:
- Moses is out
- Kante might return for the Rome game
- Conte says there is a lot of ‘bullsh**t rumours re: Ancelotti returning to CFC
- Pressure on Morata to give a good performance tomorrow
- Conte proclaims he is not a wizard
That’s it for the press conference. Thank you for tuning in. There will be more at 10.30pm.
Can the squad replicate the 13-game winning sequence from last season?
“[laughs] I’m not a wizard.”
Q: Was it easy to let Nathan Ake go?
A: My answer is always the same. I can give my opinion to my club but then the last decision is for the club. It must be very clear.
Thoughts on Chelsea losing games, he says: “We have to avoid this. I think this league is very tough and this aspect, you must be focused in every game and for sure to lose a lot of energy for the game.”
Bournemouth is a really good team, they play very well. This will be a really tough game. I think their position is not right in the table. They played a lot of games and they played very well, sometimes they were lacking. I have, and my players must have, the greatest respect.
Q: Are there people who are trying to undermine you?
A: “This is work for me. You don’t know the pressure you can have as a manager. No one person can know this type of situation.”
On whether he is concerned about Morata’s lack of goals, Conte said:
If you remember during the International break, yeah he was injured after 30 minutes of Man City game. I am happy for his performance, now tomorrow, he has another opportunity to play and try to play well. It is not important for the striker to score but important for the striker to play well.
Conte: I think our start in this season wasn’t lucky for many reasons but I think that we are doing well.
Conte confirms who is out of the squad this weekend:
“Moses is out, N’Golo is not ready, we have to wait. Danny played against Everton but for sure he needs to find the right physical condition”
And the Chelsea manager has arrived.
Conte is officially two minutes late!
Blue skies are out and the Chelsea squad are just finishing off their training. Just seen Courtois practising on the pitch ahead of tomorrow’s game.
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Chelsea have no fresh injuries ahead of their Premier league trip to Bournemouth.
Danny Drinkwater (calf), N’Golo Kante (hamstring) and Victor Moses (hamstring) will miss out again.
Drinkwater made his Chelsea debut in the 2-1 Carabao Cup victory over Everton in midweek but Antonio Conte insists he still lack match fitness.
Provisional squad: Courtois, Caballero, Rudiger, Alonso, Fabregas, Morata, Hazard, Pedro, Bakayoko, Luiz, Kenedy, Musonda, Zappacosta, Willian, Batshuayi, Cahill, Christensen, Azpilicueta, Clarke-Salter, Scott, Eduardo, Ampadu, Sterling.
Josh King could miss out for the Cherries picking up a back complaint. The Norway forward has been sent for a scan to determine the extent of the problem, which has come straight after he recovered from a virus.
Jermain Defoe has shaken off a hamstring issue, but Ryan Fraser is battling a knock.
Provisional squad: Begovic, Ake, Francis, A Smith, Daniels, L Cook, Stanislas, Pugh, Surman, Afobe, Defoe, Boruc, S Cook, Gosling, Mousset, Arter, Ibe, King, Fraser.
Bournemouth starting XI: Begovic, Smith, Francis, Ake, Daniels, Ibe, Cook, Surman, Stanislas, Mousset, Defoe
Chelsea starting XI: Courtois, Rudiger, Luiz, Cahill, Azpilicueta, Fabregas, Bakayoko, Alonso, Pedro, Morata, Hazard