Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel provides injury update on Azpilicueta and Havertz ahead of Chesterfield FA Cup visit
According to Chelsea’s official club website, manager Thomas Tuchel has confirmed that club captain Cesar Azpilicueta and forward Kai Havertz are both available for Saturday’s FA Cup third-round clash with Chesterfield.
Both Azpilicueta and Havertz were forced off during the Blues’ Carabao Cup semi-final first leg fixture against Tottenham, which Chelsea won 2-0. Although Havertz quickly gave Chelsea the lead within five minutes, he did not take the field in the second half with a suspected broken finger. Azpiliceuta meanwhile was taken off in the dying minutes of the game due to cramps.
Although there were concerns that the duo may miss Saturday’s FA Cup fixture against Chesterfield, Tuchel quashed any lingering doubts of their availability by offering a fitness update at his pre-match press conference.
“From the game the other night, Azpilicueta only had a bit of cramp so no injury and he is fine. Kai’s finger is pretty much okay to play football, so our doctors and physios will take care of him.”
The German also provided an update on defender Andreas Christensen, who has been out injured for a while, informing the press that the Dane is recovering well and is hoping to be involved at the weekend against Chesterfield.
The gaffer confirmed that both Thiago Silva and N’golo Kante would miss the FA Cup clash against the National League leaders due to Covid after the duo returned a positive test result for the coronavirus just before the Tottenham fixture in midweek.
Tuchel said he was hopeful of Christensen’s availability for the FA Cup fixture, giving him more options in defence when he puts out his starting XI.
“Andreas Christensen was in training yesterday and hopefully there will be no reaction to his injury. We have another training session later and I will need to speak to the doctors and the medical team after that to see where we are with him.”
Tuchel has given us positive news ahead of the FA Cup fixture in what is already a busy January, with multiple fixtures in different competitions heading our way and injuries and COVID-19 taking its toll on the squad.
Both Silva and Kante were sidelined from the Tottenham game in midweek at the very last minute due to Covid, and with the unpredictable nature of the virus, we can hope that no one else has fallen ill before the Chesterfield clash on Saturday.
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With Chelsea already nursing a defensive injury crisis, having Azpilicueta back in contention for the FA Cup game is massive news. We have already lost Reece James to injury this season, and having an injured Azpilicueta after the Tottenham game would mean we have no established right-backs to field against Chesterfield.
Havertz coming back after breaking his finger in the Tottenham game is also a massive boost for us, with the German forward one of the few bright sparks in attack this season as Lukaku and Werner do not seem to have fully hit their stride as of yet.
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