Chelsea centre-back Wesley Fofana has withdrawn from the France squad after picking up a hamstring injury in Saturday’s 2-2 draw with Everton.

Despite Blues manager Graham Potter’s attempt to take Fofana off the pitch in the last minutes of the game, the defender reportedly still left Stamford Bridge with an ice pack strapped on his thigh.

Fofana’s decision to withdraw from the France squad also suggests that it is not just a minor problem.

It would have been his first senior call-up for France and he is unlikely to miss such an opportunity for just a knock.

Chelsea FC v Everton FC - Premier League
Photo by Sebastian Frej/MB Media/Getty Images

According to French outlet L’Equipe, Fofana made the decision on Sunday, just a day before he was supposed to join up with his France teammates at Clairefontaine.

Didier Deschamps has since called Nice’s Jean-Clair Todibo to replace the Chelsea defender.

“[Axel] Disasi and Todibo replace Wesley Fofana and William Saliba,” FFF wrote on social media.

“Didier Deschamps decided to call up the defenders of Monaco and OGC Nice to compensate for the absence of those of Chelsea and Arsenal.”

On a more positive note, Fofana still has plenty of time to recover before Chelsea’s next match against Aston Villa on 1 April.

Fofana’s presence would be crucial if Potter plan to continue using a three-at-the-back formation.

Bear in mind that, Trevoh Chalobah has been the only recognised centre-back among Chelsea’s substitutes in recent weeks.

Fofana has started in Chelsea’s last five games, in which they kept two clean sheets and conceded just five goals.

Previously, Potter questioned Mason Mount and Raheem Sterling’s inclusion in the England squad despite their injuries.

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