The Blues midfielder believes that his side
will learn to live without their top scorer as
they prepare to keep their 11 game
winning streak going after beating Crystal
Nemanja Matic believes that Chelsea must
learn to play without top scorer Diego
Costa after he picked up his fifth yellow
card of the season. The striker will now
miss the clash with Bournemouth on
Costa was decisive in Chelsea’s 1-0 win
over Crystal Palace on Saturday and his
header in the 44th minute was enough to
bring all three points back to Stamford
Bridge – as well as to record his side’s
record-equalling 11th win in a row.
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Antonio Conte will likely call upon Michy
Batshuayi to replace Costa on Boxing Day,
but Matic believes that Chelsea need to
learn to play without their top scorer to
continue their title charge.
“We don’t have Diego and Kante for the
next game. We will have to cope with
that,” Matic said at Selhurst Park.
“We have situations like this during the
season and also the other teams will have
their own problems.
“We will have to continue, even though
they are important players for us. The next
game we play at home so we have to give
our best to take all three points.
“Everyone [in the squad] is important, as
we know in football, because you never
know who is going to play the next game. I
am very happy because you can see in
training everyone is physically ready and
they are going to be important for us.
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Costa’s 13 goals this season meant that
Conte has not yet handed Batshuayi a
Premier League start, but Matic thinks that
the Belgium international is ready to step
up against Bournemouth.
“He is a great player,” Matic added. “He
works very hard every day and has
qualities, for sure.”