Antonio Conte backs striker Michy Batshuayi to be a success at Chelsea

Michy Batshuayi is all set to replace suspended Diego Costa in the Chelsea starting XI against Bournemouth on Boxing Day.

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Bengaluru, Dec 26: Chelsea manager Antonio Conte has praised Belgian striker Michy Batshuayi who is all set to start tonight, December 26 against Bournemouth.

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Star Chelsea striker and English Premier League top scorer Diego Costa will not be playing due to a suspension, thus, Batshuayi is all set to make his way in the starting XI.

Michy Batshuayi (Image courtesy: Michy Batshuayi Twitter handle)

Ahead of the match, Blues boss Conte said, he is confident that talented striker Batshuayi would perfectly fit into the team and Costa's absence will not be felt.

He said: "Michy's attitude, his ­behaviour, have been fantastic. He wants to improve his quality. Technical quality, physical quality.

"We are working a lot with him on tactical aspects. But he's showing great commitment, great work-rate during the training sessions, great passion. For sure, he wants to play and it's not easy when you have Costa in front of you.

"Above all this, Diego is playing fantastic football and scoring a lot of goals. But I repeat: it's important for Michy to continue to work, to continue to improve. I'm sure his moment will arrive."

Conte further added: "Every single player, every forward, has different ­characteristics. The players are different. Michy is different if you compare him to Diego.

"Above all because, first of all, he's a younger player. He can improve a lot. To stay close to Diego, you can learn a lot to improve your experience and improve your skills. But to have the training sessions with great players improves you.

"In this case, I prefer not to put more ­pressure on the players because it's no good to do that.

"If I decide to put Michy in the starting XI, he is ready to play. It's not important to talk and put more pressure on him.

"He must do what he knows, what we are doing in the training sessions. If Michy is in, it's because he deserves to be."

Chelsea are currently leading the Premier League table with 43 points from 17 matches, 6 points clear at the top.

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