Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has announced that the pair of Blues’ players Romelu Lukaku and Kai Havertz are doubts for Tuesday’s Champions League match against Juventus.
The team has been strengthened by Timo Werner’s return to fitness, while Jorginho is available despite a minor knock suffered against Leicester.
Chelsea is three points behind Juventus in their Champions League group, and if they lose, they would be stuck in second place.
Lukaku and Werner both sustained injuries during Chelsea’s 4-0 victory against Malmo on October 20. After a reckless tackle by defender Lasse Nielsen, the Belgium international hurt his ankle, while Werner pulled up with a hamstring injury.
Havertz suffered a hamstring strain in the win over Leicester, while Jorginho recovered from a minor injury suffered in the same game.
At a news conference ahead of the game, Tuchel was asked about Lukaku and stated, “We have one more training session. Yesterday he was in team training and seemed okay. Let’s see about the reaction. He has, right now in the next minutes, an appointment with the doctors and physios right now to see about his reaction and the next training.
“Maybe if we have the chance to bring 20 players into the squad, he has the chance to be in the squad (team) for the last minutes. That would be the absolute maximum that we could get out of the situation right now.”
About other injury concerns, the German gaffer said: “Jorgi is absolutely OK. Kai felt a bit of tension in the hamstrings and we took him off, and we have some doubts with him. We have to check and see if he can train without any problems. This is the question mark.
“Timo feels good and was in training yesterday and is in the squad again. Mateo Kovacic is out, and that’s it.”
Lukaku remains one of the best forwards in the world, despite his lacklustre form since joining Chelsea. The Blues have continued to win despite the absence of their first-choice striker – and second-choice Werner – but Havertz’s stint as a false nine now appears to be causing him injury problems.
Chelsea will want to see Lukaku and Werner return to fitness as quickly as possible to both feature in the team selection, especially given the importance of the next games against Juventus, Manchester United, and West Ham United.
Werner, who has only recently returned from a hamstring injury, is the obvious pick to face Juventus.
The German forward has only scored twice in ten games this season, and when he is fit, he is second best to Lukaku. The chance to play as Chelsea’s main man could be the boost that the notoriously streaky player requires.