Antonio Conte casts doubt over David Luiz's long-term future
Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has suggested that David Luiz will have to 'work really hard' in order to regain his spot in the starting lineup.
The Brazil international was axed from the Blues squad for the 1-0 triumph over Manchester United with Andreas Christensen getting the nod in central defence.
Christensen put in a strong performance in Luiz's absence, and Conte later confirmed that the decision was purely tactical although the Brazilian will have to work harder to reclaim his place.
"I don't know [if he has a future at Chelsea], he has to work really hard with the others, otherwise they are on the bench or in the stand," he told Sky Sports News.
"No, no. Tactical decision. There is [Andreas] Christensen in really good form and also we have [Ethan] Ampadu who is a good young player. The club like to play with the young player."
Christensen has now played in the wins over both Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United this campaign, and Conte could use more of the Dane in the coming months with Luiz, in particular, looking sketchy without possession.
While Conte admits that there is no rift between him and Luiz, the news will come as a cause of concern for the Blues' faithful - given Diego Costa was omitted in a similar fashion prior to falling out-of-favour in the summer.
The Spaniard has since reached an agreement to join Atletico Madrid, but his compatriot Alvaro Morata shined for Chelsea once again as he headed in the match-winning goal versus United.