Antonio Rudiger has already made Chelsea supporters on social media sweat over his fitness before the battle with Brentford this weekend.
Rudiger did not feature in Germany’s final international fixture last night due to back issues.
Could it be from carrying Chelsea for the past few months?
We don’t claim to be doctors, but it’s certainly a possible explanation…
What we can’t prescribe is the length of Rudiger’s absence.
Thomas Tuchel will certainly hope the defender’s issue is only minor, as he continues Chelsea’s preparations for the Premier League trip to Brentford’s hive.
Whilst a verdict on the centre-back’s well-being continues to be written out, Blues fans can only sit and twiddle their thumbs.
Here’s how they reacted on Twitter:
Bring him back @ChelseaFC— KAA ⭐⭐ (CFC💙) (@officialtruekaa) October 11, 2021
Send him back to England pls. Need him for Saturday— Bruce. (@papanoGh) October 11, 2021
Are u kidding me— Rudra (@rudra_cfc) October 11, 2021
Treatment table troubles
Clearly, Rudiger’s absence would be a massive negative for Chelsea but a huge plus for Brentford.
The Bees have stung all challengers for their pot of honey this season.
Facing the fellow London club without proper protection has become something of a death wish.
A Rudiger-sized whole in the Blues back-line will certainly be a cause for concern.
Especially as Thiago Silva is also set to miss Saturday’s tie, having been denied the chance to return from Brazil duties early.
Reece James definitely won’t play a part, as he continues to recover from an ankle problem.
Romelu Lukaku’s muscle overload that caused him to detract from Belgium’s squad must be approached with caution.
Big loss for the Blues
Take all four players and Chelsea lose a massive chunk of their spine.
Brentford must be buzzing at the thought of potentially facing a half-mast Blues ship.
But Thomas Frank will know his managerial name-sake has plenty more options in reserve.
Tuchel may have to do some tinkering, but that’s never been a problem for him before.