Antonio Conte has met the media on Friday afternoon ahead of the FA Cup clash with Newcastle.
The two Premier League clubs meet on Sunday with a 1.30pm kick-off live on BT Sport, with a prize of a place in the fifth round at stake.
Contrasting fortunes in recent times, with Chelsea having reached the fifth round in 17 of the last 19 attempts, whilst 2006 was the last time Newcastle went past the fourth round – never having done so under Mike Ashley.
Antonio Conte had good news for Rafa Benitez and the Newcastle fans, confirming that Courtois, Morata and Willian all definitely miss Sunday.
Whilst Fabregas will have a late fitness test.
Amusingly, Conte gives a hard luck story about lack of options, this from a club with some 35 players currently out on loan!
“Morata and Courtois are out…Morata has this problem with his back.
“Courtois took a kick in the ankle.
“Fabregas though trained with us today and On Saturday I will check his condition – good news for us.
“Willian is out though, doctor (has said) he be having a scan to evaluate the injury but hopefully not serious.”
Facing Newcastle in the FA Cup:
“Every competition is important and we lost against Arsenal, now there is another competition.
“This competition (FA Cup) is very difficult – there is also an opponent and that opponent has the same ambition.”
Asked whether Ross Barkley will play on Sunday:
“After a bad injury you need time to be 100% and f we want to accelerate the process, then he has to play.
“After Morata and Willian injuries, we don’t have any other options (anyway).”
“As you know if there is any transfer news the club will tell you. I am repeating every three days that I will continue to work with my players, it doesn’t change my opinion,
“I am repeating the same things, I am the coach and it is my task is to try to do the best for this club and improve the players.”
Asked if worried about the fact Marcos Alonso has played so many games (starting all 24 Premier League matches and another eight so far in domestic cups and Europe):
“I am not worried because last season we had to deal with this situation in the same way.”