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“Conte clearly doesn’t rate him” – Ex-Chelsea man fears for star’s future at Stamford Bridge

Former Chelsea player Tony Cascarino has painted a pretty gloomy picture for Michy Batshuayi, as he’s adamant that Antonio Conte doesn’t rate him.

The 24-year-old arrived from Marseille last summer and has scored 14 goals in 35 appearances in all competitions, which on paper, is a pretty respectable tally.

Further, the Belgian international scored the goal that won the Premier League title for Chelsea last season and so there certainly are positives to be taken from his time at Stamford Bridge so far.

However, that doesn’t account for the times that Conte has snubbed him even when he’s been without his first choice striker, instead opting to start the likes of Eden Hazard up front or bring in Willian rather than allowing Batshuayi to spearhead his attack.

Cascarino, who spent two years with Chelsea between 1992 and 1994, believes that he’s seen enough to suggest that Conte doesn’t have faith in his striker, especially taking into consideration their pursuit of Fernando Llorente this past summer prior to his move to Tottenham, and that could spell trouble for his future in west London.

“When you are at a club and they are trying to sign a 32-year-old, 6ft 4in striker who would make you the third-choice No 9, then it’s clear the manager doesn’t rate you,” he told The Times.

“That’s the situation Batshuayi has found himself in at Chelsea. And even though Antonio Conte didn’t sign Fernando Llorente, he’s still trying to not play Batshuayi. How many arrows can be fired into his back? Conte clearly doesn’t rate him and that rubs off on the fans, who think he’s not good enough.”

Taking the weekend’s defeat to Crystal Palace into consideration, a game in which Batshuayi struggled, it’s clear why he hasn’t been able to fully convince everyone at Chelsea that he can lead the line on a regular basis.

It’s still difficult to ignore the fact that perhaps Conte has been a little harsh in not giving him more opportunities to prove himself, but ultimately Cascarino has made his mind up, as have many Chelsea fans in all probability, that Batshuayi can’t be more than a useful squad player, if he even has a long-term future at the club.

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