Conte admits frustration over Morata’s ongoing back injury

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Antonio Conte would really appreciate if he could have his star striker, Alvaro Morata, available for selection sooner rather than later, but has admitted he grows more “worried” with each passing day that the club’s doctors “[struggle] a lot to find a solution to solve the pain in his back”.

[ MORE: Conte discusses reports over his Chelsea future ]

Speaking this week, ahead of Chelsea’s Premier League clash with West Bromwich Albion on Monday (Watch live, 3 p.m. ET, on NBCSN and NBCSports.com), Conte vented frustrations over the lingering injury which has kept Morata, who’s thus far scored a dozen goals (10 in the PL) in his first season in England, out of the Blues’ last five games (three losses, two wins), and the uncertainty over how much longer he might remain out of action — quotes from the Guardian:

“We have been talking a lot about bad results but sometimes we forget we are facing a serious situation. Players like Morata, for us, are very important and have been missing for a long period of time. I don’t know how long he will be out.

“We are struggling a lot to find a solution to solve the pain in his back. If you ask me whether he needs a day, a month or the rest of the season, I don’t know. For this reason, I’m a bit worried. You know very well the importance of the player.

Olivier Giroud is expected to make his first start (second overall appearance) for Chelsea when West Brom visit Stamford Bridge on Monday, and remain the main man up top for as long as Morata’s injury leaves him sidelined. Giroud, of course, has a fairly extensive injury history of his own, though, which could leave Conte quickly rethinking the club’s decision to loan Michy Batshuayi to Borussia Dortmund as part of the triangle trade of strikers on transfer deadline day.