'High possibility': Tuchel suggests Chelsea may return to team v Zenit

'High possibility': Tuchel suggests 27-year-old Chelsea player may return to side tomorrow

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel may have dropped a selection hint about Chelsea player Saul Niguez ahead of tomorrow’s game in the Champions League.

The Blues travel to Russia on Wednesday to face Zenit in their final European match of 2021. Tuchel’s side know their qualification to the last-16 has already been secured, but they are still bidding to finish top of their group.

Chelsea go into the midweek fixture without Jorginho. In addition, N’Golo Kante, Mateo Kovacic, Ben Chilwell and Trevoh Chalobah are on the sidelines against Zenit.

With several important players missing, Tuchel’s options in the centre of the park look extremely thin.

Saul, 27, is one possible option that could come into the central midfield position.

The Spaniard was taken off at half time in the recent league win against Watford, while at the weekend he was an unused substitute in the defeat to West Ham.

Tuchel may have opened the door on Saul playing tomorrow, though:

“We will not stop encouraging him and we will try to bring out his best to help us and help the team. There is a high possibility we will do this tomorrow and we will help him,” Tuchel said.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

How will Chelsea start in midfield?

Thankfully, Chelsea’s squad is stacked with a lot of talent.

The absence of Kante, Kovacic and Jorginho at the same time decimates the Blues midfield, but there are still alternatives.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek seems a safe bet to continue in the XI. Meanwhile, Saul, Ross Barkley or Mason Mount are possible choices to play in the midfield alongside him.

Saul’s time in London has been extremely difficult since joining on a season-long loan from Atletico Madrid.

The left-footed midfielder is yet to recapture any of his best form and it feels like he’s running out of lives to win over the Stamford Bridge faithful.

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Dom is a Chelsea supporter who has worked in online publishing for more than six years. Graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016, he now writes exclusively for The Chelsea Chronicle covering news, analysis and match coverage. He enjoys the dream position of writing about his boyhood club, which seems to be involved in more drama every single day than an episode of The Bill. Aside from his love for Chelsea, he supports and follows the England cricket team. He also fancies himself as the Sunday League version of Michael Essien.