Chelsea duo Mateo Kovacic and Antonio Rudiger have both been ruled out of this weekend’s game with West Ham due to injuries.
The Blues host London rivals West Ham on Sunday afternoon in a Premier League match.
For Chelsea, they’ll desperately be trying to respond to three consecutive defeats at Stamford Bridge. Thomas Tuchel’s side know there’s still work to be done to consolidate third in the league table this season, too.
Meanwhile, you couldn’t blame opponents West Ham if they’ve got one eye on next week’s Europa League semi-final against Eintracht Frankfurt.
Chelsea manager Tuchel has confirmed ahead of the London derby that senior duo Kovacic and Rudiger remain unavailable.
“For Sunday both of them [Kovacic and Rudiger] are not back. But there are no other new injuries,” Tuchel said.
It’s a shame to hear that two important players remain out of action this weekend.
Kovacic, 27, missed the midweek defeat to Arsenal with an ankle problem, so Tuchel will need to continue without him in the midfield.
29-year-old defender Rudiger was absent against Arsenal, too. The powerhouse centre-back leaves a major hole in the XI when he doesn’t play, so his groin problem is a real blow to the side ahead of facing a West Ham team that love to be physical.
This pair have been two of the most consistent performers over the course of this season, which is why it’s time for others to step up in their absence.