Chelsea will be desperate to bounce back to winning ways when Southampton visit Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon with Thomas Tuchel’s side still hurting from two defeats in a week.
Manchester City picked up a 1-0 win in the Premier League last Saturday before Juventus took all three points against them in the Champions League, winning by the same scoreline.
It is not a case of reaching for the panic button in west London with the club still sat in third place in the top-flight and just one point off leaders Liverpool, but the pressure will certainly start to grow should they fail to pick up three points today.
A win, however, would send them top for at least 24 hours, with the Reds playing City on Sunday evening.
Tuchel’s job has not been made any easier though by a series of injury concerns in the build up to the clash. With that in mind, football.london takes you through the latest team news at the Bridge.
Probably the most frustrating of Tuchel’s problems will be the absence of Kante, who tested positive for Covid-19 in the build up to the Blues’ Champions League clash and will miss today’s game as a result.
“N’Golo has symptoms but not a lot of symptoms, so he’s okay,” was Tuchel’s latest update.
“I don’t want to go into more details. He’s okay. He’s doing well.
“He was concerned about it [in the past], and he did everything not to get it. Unfortunately, he tested positive but we care about him, like we care about every player. We’re in touch with him every single day. The doctors are in touch with him and he has our advice and our support, and he is in a good way.”
It was a surprise to see Gareth Southgate call the right-back into his England squad this week with the defender remaining sidelined with an ankle injury suffered against Manchester City.
Tuchel confirmed that he too was surprised, saying that the player has not yet moved beyond doing work in the pool.
“When I saw it I thought that maybe Reece goes with the water polo team for England, because right now he trains in the pool,” he told his pre-match press conference.
“So I was a bit surprised, but I understood that he was selected for the football team. So this will not happen because Reece is training in the pool right now.”
Mount has been missing for the last two games after struggling with a knock but Tuchel confirmed that the England midfielder is ready to return to action after also receiving a call-up.
The midfielder has been missed during his absence, having been one of the manager’s most used players during his tenure at Stamford Bridge.
“For Mason [Mount] is in the squad, he’s back, it was not a long injury, a minor injury,” Tuchel confirmed.
“We’re happy that he’s back and it’s obviously a given that he’s nominated. He’s happy to be nominated and will give everything to do his best for the England squad.
“We need to be careful. We took him out at half time [against Spurs] because had a bit of a rough half and everybody was so high on us in the second half when he was not on the pitch.”
The American international suffered an ankle injury on international duty with the USMNT and missed the Premier League games against Aston Villa and Tottenham.
He did not appear in the cup reunion with Villa and was once again restricted to the sidelines against Manchester City and Juventus.
Despite being back in full training, the winger is also set to be missing from squad that faces Southampton.
“Do we miss Christian Pulisic? Of course we do, his sprints and intensity,” Tuchel said at his press conference.