Photo: Julian Finney/Getty Images

Chelsea January transfer signing Ross Barkley has been on the sidelines for six months with a hamstring injury prior to joining Chelsea and Chelsea boss Antonio Conte admits he’s been impressed with his physical condition.

However, the Chelsea manager has revealed his only worry is for the former Everton midfielder to fit into Chelsea’s style of play.

“I thought I’d find a player who was not in good physical condition. Instead, I was surprised to find a player in good physical condition,” Conte said.

Yes, yes, a positive surprise. You saw that during the Arsenal game [in the League Cup last week]. He played. He was my first substitution after the Willian injury.

“My worry is not about his physical condition, but only to go into our idea of football, to understand the movement without the ball and with the ball.

“For this, he needs a bit of period to go into our idea of football. To understand this. My worry is not about his physical condition, but to get into our idea of football.”

Barkley made his debut in the League Cup defeat to Arsenal and also played in Chelsea’s last game against Newcastle United in the FA Cup fourth round win for the Blues.

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Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.