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Tuchel explains why two senior Chelsea stars were absent in FA Cup win over Boro

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Chelsea shot-stopper, Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Thomas Tuchel gives reason behind the absence of Jorginho and Kepa Arrizabalaga against Middlesbrough

Speaking after the game against Middlesbrough last night, as quoted by Football London, Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has provided explanations over the absence of Jorginho and Kepa Arrizabalaga from the squad.

Chelsea emerged victorious by a 2-0 scoreline against Boro in the FA Cup quarter-final last night thanks to goals from Romelu Lukaku and Hakim Ziyech. However, two notable absentees from the matchday squad included Jorginho and Kepa.

The Spaniard is Chelsea’s cup goalkeeper and was expected to start in yesterday’s clash. Kepa would have been hoping to bounce back from the Carabao Cup final debacle and prove himself against Middlesbrough last night but he was not playing.

Kepa Arrizabalaga missed the game due to illness . (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
Kepa Arrizabalaga missed the game due to illness (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

Jorginho, who has been an ever-present in the Chelsea midfield this season might have started again yesterday and his absence was surprising, although more understandable than Kepa. There were concerns that the Italian may be injured.

When asked regarding the absences of both key players, Tuchel clarified that the Spaniard was down with illness and hence couldn’t take part in the game but the Italian was merely given a rest.

“Kepa is ill and we gave Jorgi the chance to have a pause. He has played six games in a row. I decided that he could have a break and didn’t need the travel today.”

How have the duo fared this season?

Jorginho has played almost every game for Chelsea this season and he is expected to play both games for Italy in the upcoming international break.

Jorginho was given some much needed rest. (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
Jorginho was given some much-needed rest. (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

It makes sense to give the Italian midfielder a break considering Chelsea’s hectic schedule till the end of the season. Tuchel will want his midfield star to be fit and firing for the crucial games.

Kepa, on the other hand, has had a backup role to the outstanding Eduardo Mendy for quite some time now. The Spanish shot-stopper was brought on for the Senegal international for the penalty shoot-out against Liverpool in the EFL Cup final and it is safe to say that he did not cover himself in glory.

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Chelsea’s signing of Kepa hasn’t worked out as per plan but the Spanish international would have been hoping for a renaissance against the Boros. However, with the illness, it’s safe to say that he will have to wait for his next chance. Until then, we have the reliable Mendy to bank upon.

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