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Eden Hazard could start against Nottingham Forest - Antonio Conte

Eden Hazard could start against Nottingham Forest - Antonio Conte

Hazard could start against Forest on Wednesday

Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has confirmed that star playmaker Eden Hazard could make his first Blues start of the season when they host Nottingham Forest in the third round of the League Cup on Wednesday.

The 26-year-old missed the first few weeks of the campaign with an ankle injury, but he has since played cameo roles in the games against Leicester City, Qarabag and Arsenal.

Conte has been cautious about Hazard's situation of late, but he is now prepared to play him from the off during the midweek clash against Nottingham Forest.

"The last 20 minutes [against Arsenal], Hazard played very well," he is quoted as saying by Evening Standard after his side's goalless draw against Arsenal on Sunday.

"Now, on Wednesday, he will have the possibility to start the game against Nottingham Forest and complete his recovery. We hope that everything is okay after this game."

Hazard has previously featured for 74 minutes in Belgium's 9-0 triumph over Gibraltar during a recent World Cup qualifier, but Conte has decided to stay patient in order to avoid any injury setback for the attacker.

The 26-year-old was a key contributor towards Chelsea's Premier League triumph last season as he provided 16 goals and a further five assists in 36 appearances.