Antonio Conte is hopeful that N’Golo Kante will be back available and ready to start for Chelsea in their Champions League clash with Roma on Tuesday night.
The French midfielder has been missing for the last few weeks with a muscular injury picked up while on duty with his national team.
Kante has been working hard on his fitness levels at Chelsea’s Cobham training ground in recent days and he did not feature during the 1-0 victory over Bournemouth on Saturday evening.
The PFA player of the year is now closing in on a return to action and Conte has confirmed that he is hoping to have the midfielder back available for selection when the Blues take on Roma in Italy on Tuesday night.
Speaking at his post-match news conference on Saturday, Conte said: “He could be ready.
“I know very well the importance of this player. I want to be sure he is ready.
“I hope to have him in this game, but I prefer to not take this type of risk. If he is ready, he plays.”
Alvaro Morata set up Eden Hazard for Chelsea’s goal in their narrow victory at the Vitality Stadium on Saturday evening.
The victory over the Cherries left Conte’s men in fourth place in the Premier League table and nine points behind leaders Manchester City after 10 games of the new campaign.
The Blues, who won the title last term, host Manchester United at Stamford Bridge in their next game next weekend.