Chelsea train at Cobham with defenders missing

Toni Rudiger, who suffered an injury in our most recent game, was absent from training on Wednesday afternoon ahead of our Europa League contest on Thursday night.

Marcos Alonso also not part of the squad as the players went out onto the pitch at Cobham in spring sunshine, just over 24 hours before the deciding match in our quarter-final tie with Slavia Prague. Chelsea have a 1-0 lead from the first leg, when Alonso was the goalscorer.

As is the norm for UEFA competition matches, the first 15 minutes of the training session were open to the outside media, cameras and reporters alike.

Rudiger was forced off the pitch after 40 minutes of Sunday’s 2-0 defeat against Liverpool at Anfield due to an injury that had needed treatment earlier in the game. He was replaced in central defence by Andreas Christensen. Alonso was not involved in the game at the weekend. Ethan Ampadu, who has not played since the Europa League match at home to Malmo two months ago, was also missing from today’s training, as was midfielder Danny Drinkwater.

Straight after the Liverpool match, Maurizio Sarri said about Rudiger’s injury: ‘I hope it is nothing serious of course but at the moment I am not able to say anything, we need to go to Cobham and have another visit with the doctor, and probably we will need something else in morning to be sure the injury is not serious. I am not sure.’

Later today, at 7pm UK time, there will be a media conference to preview tomorrow’s match which can be watched live via this website and on The 5th Stand. Further fitness updates on our players are likely.

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