Graham Potter has claimed to Football London that he was impressed by the four Chelsea players who played last night who have recently returned from injury.

The Blues were defeated 1-0 last night by Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League Round of 16 first leg.

Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Kalidou Koulibaly have all recently returned to the side after time away from the squad.

Borussia Dortmund v Chelsea FC: Round of 16 Leg One - UEFA Champions League
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The wing-back pair in particular have been sorely missed in recent months, with Potter scrambling for options at times to try and fill their voids.

Last night saw the pair start together for the first time all year, and they looked as if they brought an attacking threat their fellow players cannot.

James in particular went on one run where he was absolutely unstoppable, before being fouled on the edge of the penalty area.

Potter impressed by returning players

Koulibaly was playing his first game in a while, and was under pressure after losing his regular spot in the first team to new signing Benoit Badiashile.

He dealt with the pressure well though, and put in one of his most assured performances in a Chelsea shirt.

Loftus-Cheek was again instructed to be the partner to Enzo Fernandez last night. While the midfield duo will almost certainly not be the long-term option, his performance didn’t let the side down by any means.

Borussia Dortmund v Chelsea FC: Round of 16 Leg One - UEFA Champions League
Photo by Marcel ter Bals/BSR Agency/Getty Images

Potter has praised the quartet for their display last night, highlighting how difficult it is to come into a game of that magnitude.

He said: “You’re looking at Reece [James], Ben [Chilwell], Ruben [Loftus-Cheek] and Kalidou [Koulibaly], that was either their first or second game for quite some time. It isn’t easy to pick up the speed of the Champions League but I thought they did it well.”

The only worry will be Chilwell coming off after taking a kick, with his fitness a big need for the second leg.

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