"I hope to have him back for the Roma game (in the Champions League)", Conte said of Kante. Conte is happy that Chelsea have learned how to play without their midfielder after initially blaming his absence for a downturn in form a few weeks ago.
Chelsea will still head into the game as favourites, given the two teams' positions in the league, but the champions have looked vulnerable recently and Bournemouth have momentum.
When then questioned which players in the world compared to Kante, Conte replied: "There are players with the same characteristics but N'Golo is a really good player".
"[Danny] Drinkwater is nearly ready too and Kante is at the stage nearly to come back with us".
The furious Italian denies his reign been undermined by players texting his former assistant Steve Holland to complain of his training methods and rejects a story that he will not see out the remaining 20 months of his contract. He reacted angrily to reports that Chelsea were looking to replace him with his friend Carlo Ancelotti or Napoli's Maurizio Sarri.
"There is a lot of bull****", he said.
"It is not correct and I hate this type of situation".
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"I think Michy is improving a lot. But to win will be the ideal story and we fancy our chances".
"We created a lot of chances...we didn't score, that's the problem, but we have three points and we move on". Some people can think to win is easy but it is not easy.