Chelsea defender Kurt Zouma believes the team will be fine even with Thiago Silva left out from their Champions League squad against Krasnodar.
Silva, along with Kepa Arrizabalaga and Billy Gilmour are the three Chelsea players who did not fly to Russia for their Champions League group match against Krasnodar on Wednesday.
While Silva deserves a rest after his brilliant performance at Old Trafford on Saturday, his absence could have an impact on Chelsea’s defence after positive back-to-back clean-sheets.
Zouma was full of praise for his centre-back partner in his pre-match press conference on Tuesday evening.
“He brings experience,” he told the reporters (via Football London) about how important Silva has been for Chelsea’s backline.
“He’s trying to talk to players, help people – which is great for us. He brings calm.”
But if Zouma starts tomorrow, he will not have Silva alongside him.
Asked whether he has something to prove without Silva, Zouma said: “We have quality everywhere. Before Thiago we were doing good too. There’s nothing to prove.
“We’re here as a team to win the game.”
Interesting response, although it would certainly raise a few eyebrows considering the Blues’ poor defensive record prior to Silva’s arrival this summer.
Frank Lampard confirmed that Antonio Rudiger is in contention for tomorrow’s game, but both Andreas Christensen and Fikayo Tomori will also be available.
Tomorrow’s team selection might tell us where these defenders stand in the centre-back pecking order.