Antonio Conte has confirmed Cesc Fabregas is in contention for selection ahead of Sunday’s match against Middlesbrough and insists the Spain international has a long-term future at Chelsea.
Fabregas has been reduced to a bit-part role since Conte was appointed as Jose Mourinho’s permanent successor in the summer and has started just a solitary Premier League game so far this season.
The former Arsenal captain has seen his place in the Chelsea engine room taken by summer signing N’Golo Kante, while the return to form of both Nemanja Matic and Eden Hazard has resulted in him spending most of the season on the substitutes’ bench.
Fabregas has, however, recovered from a muscle injury which ruled him out of Chelsea’s previous two matches and Conte insists he remains part of his plans amid rumours he could be set for a January exit.
He said: ‘Cesc is fully fit and available for Sunday. Same picture for him as Oscar.’