John Terry fit to start for Chelsea against Peterborough - Antonio Conte

LONDON -- Antonio Conte has confirmed that John Terry is fit to start for Chelsea in Sunday's FA Cup third round tie against Peterborough, but revealed that youngsters Kenedy and Charly Musonda will not feature while the club decides whether or not to send them back out on loan in January.

Terry has not started a Premier League match since straining ankle ligaments in a 2-2 draw with Swansea City back in September, and his rehabilitation has been further hindered by a glute muscle injury picked up prior to Chelsea's 2-1 win over Tottenham at Stamford Bridge in November.

Conte has repeatedly insisted that his captain continued to play an important role in the dressing room throughout the 13-match winning streak that saw Chelsea surge to the top of the Premier League, but has now hinted that the 36-year-old will be given another chance to impress on Sunday.

"John is in a good shape and he's ready to play," Conte said. "He's doing great work on the pitch and outside the pitch. It's important to underline this."

Conte is expected to make significant changes from the Chelsea team that tasted Premier League defeat for the first time since September against Tottenham at White Hart Lane on Wednesday, and has already confirmed that summer signing Michy Batshuayi will come in together with Kurt Zouma, who has been sidelined for 11 months with a serious knee injury.

Kenedy and Musonda, however, will not be involved. Both returned to Cobham in December for assessment following failed loan spells at Watford and Real Betis respectively, but FIFA rules state that players cannot represent three clubs in the same season, meaning a competitive appearance for Chelsea would make the pair ineligible for loan in the second half of the campaign.

"For Musonda, for Kenedy, this month is important," Conte added. "They went on loan and it's important to wait this month [to see] what happens, to evaluate the situation in the right way and then find the best solution for the club and for the players above all.

"We know now that if Musonda or Kenedy play one second with us, they can't go on loan. For this reason it's important to evaluate. Kenedy is training with us only two weeks, Charly only 10 days.

"It's important to evaluate these players and then make the best decision for the players, for the team, for the club and for me."