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Published: 08:43 | 4/8/16

Conte prepared to trim squad


Chelsea head coach Antonio Conte has hinted that there could be more departures from Stamford Bridge before the start of the new Premier League season.

Conte has already seen Mohamed Salah exit the club in favour of joining Roma on a permanent deal, while defender Baba Rahman will spend the season on loan at German side Schalke.

Having only been in the job for a matter of weeks, Conte is using pre-season to familiarise himself with his squad and the Italian believes there is every chance a number of players could be heading for the exit door in the coming weeks.

Speaking after Wednesday's 3-1 International Champions Cup defeat of Milan in the United States, Conte revealed he would be speaking to the club about possible departures.

"I think this match told me a lot about the players who we will keep, and who can go on loan or we can sell," Conte said. "Today, it was important because I have a clearer idea than before.

"Now we go back to London. It's important for me and for the club to talk and take decisions about all the players.

"In pre-season we worked with 30 players - four goalkeepers and 26 players. There is one game remaining against Werder Bremen and then we must take the decision.

"We hope to take the best decision for the club and the players, too."

Oscar scored a brace in the defeat of Milan and Conte was quick to praise the Brazilian's attitude and desire.

"Oscar is an important player. I think the season when Chelsea won the title, he was fantastic," Conte said.

"Last season was bad for all the players, not only for Oscar or for another player, for all.

"I think Oscar is a good player with a great talent and he can improve a lot. I see a good attitude and a good will in him."

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