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Lampard issues injury update: Willian a maybe, in-house game minutes for Pulisic and Loftus-Cheek, Hudson-Odoi setback

It’s a busy treatment room at Cobham at the moment and Frank Lampard has reported the latest injury news on five of his players, including a positive development for Christian Pulisic.

The boss spoke to the media at our training ground this afternoon ahead of Everton’s visit on Sunday, and as well as discussing subjects ranging from Billy Gilmour to the consequences of coronavirus, Lampard detailed the latest news on a number of players who have been injured recently.

‘We just had an in-house game here which Ruben and Christian Pulisic took part in,’ reported Lampard, starting with the good.

‘It’s great to see Christian get some minutes. He’s short of match fitness but it’s the first time the injury has felt at a level to get him on a big pitch in a relatively competitive match. That’s a big step forward, hopefully.

‘Ruben played half of that game himself. He is trying to find match fitness. He’s short of that, Ruben is saying that himself and I can see that. There is work to do.’

Tammy Abraham said last night he wanted to be back before the end of this month, and Lampard agreed that was his hope too. Mateo Kovacic will miss the Everton game with the Achilles injury he picked up against Liverpool, but the boss is hopeful it ‘won’t be long after that’.

‘Willian we are assessing,’ added Lampard. ‘He is a question mark for Sunday.’

The boss had bad news to report on Callum Hudson-Odoi

‘He had a re-injury yesterday. We’re having a scan this afternoon. He will be longer than expected.

‘It’s tough. He wasn’t rushed back. All the signs were he was fit to train. He got reinjured on his first training session with us. It’s frustrating for him, a young boy who is so keen to play, and frustrating because it’s another injury for us.’

Injuries and Jorginho’s suspension mean there is a possibility Billy Gilmour could retain his place in midfield after his impressive showing in midweek

‘He’s been the same,’ said Lampard. ‘He had a day off, I’m sure he enjoyed it, he should do. His family were here for the game. Billy is a very determined young lad, very smart. He’ll understand it was a good game for him, but the hard work starts now.’

Lampard was asked what would change if games had to be played behind-closed-doors because of coronavirus, and what measures have been taken by the club

‘It wouldn’t affect preparation. You would still take on the opposition in front of you. It would obviously affect the atmosphere. That would take away a lot from the game when you don’t have fans. It’s part of why we love this sport, but there are clearly some things that are more important. If that’s the path that gets chosen by the authorities, or the government, then you go with that.

‘We are not shaking hands. We are following the protocol that is recommended, the doctors lead that one with us. We are doing everything we can with our ears open as things change.’

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