Sunday 25 September 2016

Antonio Conte downplays John Terry injury after Chelsea draw at Swansea

Published 11/09/2016 | 18:31

John Terry was injured in the closing stages of Chelsea's draw at Swansea
John Terry was injured in the closing stages of Chelsea's draw at Swansea

Antonio Conte is confident John Terry will be fit to take on Liverpool after the Chelsea captain suffered an ankle injury in a controversial 2-2 draw at Swansea.

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Terry's participation for Liverpool's Premier League visit to Stamford Bridge on Friday was thrown into doubt when he pulled up in the closing stages of the match.

The Chelsea captain reportedly left the Liberty Stadium on crutches and Conte said more about Terry's condition would be known on Monday.

"I don't know the extent of the injury but tomorrow we will see the situation about his ankle," said Chelsea manager Conte.

"But he is a warrior and I am not worried."

Chelsea dominated before the break to deservedly lead through Diego Costa's 18th-minute goal.

But Gylfi Sigurdsson's penalty and Leroy Fer's disputed goal within a few minutes of each other saw Swansea take an unlikely lead.

Costa, however, salvaged a point for Chelsea with a spectacular bicycle kick - despite some claims of a foul - nine minutes from time, his fourth goal of the season saving the Blues' unbeaten record.

"It's very difficult to talk about the game and the final result because I think Chelsea deserved to win," said Conte.

"We created a lot of chances to score many goals, and I think we were dominating the game when we were leading 1-0.

"But in only two minutes we were losing 2-1.

"For the second goal I think everyone can see the foul on (Gary) Cahill and there is a big mistake from the referee.

"I also want to say that this can happen for one side or the other side. I don't want to complain, but this is the reality.

"But we had a fantastic reaction, the players showed we did not want to lose and we tried to win until the end.

"It is a pity because I think we lost two points today. Now we must look forward and prepare the next game."

Swansea manager Francesco Guidolin changed his usual formation to stop Chelsea in their tracks.

Guidolin played three central defenders but he scrapped the system just before half-time with Wales defender Neil Taylor sacrificed as Swansea returned to four at the back.

Taylor was visibly unhappy as he left the pitch, and Guidolin said he had apologised to the player for his withdrawal.

"Yes, yes, I apologise on the bench, and in the dressing-room," said Guidolin.

"He is a clever guy. I think he understood, but I made a mistake. I should have waited three minutes.

"But Mo (Barrow) was ready five minutes before, so I decided to do it this way.

"It's the first time in my career I have done this. I am sorry for Neil Taylor.

"Chelsea are a strong, strong team. But we are happy because we changed something.

"My team needs a reaction. Probably, with the change of shape, we played in the second half with more aggression, energy and intensity. We are happy with our result."

Press Association

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