Chelsea will be without four players for tomorrow’s trip to Bournemouth but Ruben Loftus-Cheek is in line to feature in competitive action for the first time since May.
Christian Pulisic, N’Golo Kante, Tammy Abraham and Callum Hudson-Odoi all remain sidelined as we return to Premier League action looking to strengthen our position in the top four.
‘Pulisic is still injured and Kante is still injured,’ said Frank Lampard at his customary pre-match press conference.
‘Abraham is injured with the same problem as before. We’re trying to find a solution with him. It’s frustrating that he has come in and out somewhat but he’s injured for tomorrow. Callum is another one who isn’t fit this weekend.’
Pulisic has not featured since New Year’s Day as he continues to suffer with a frustrating niggly groin injury and Lampard admits he has sympathy with the American after battling a similar problem as a player.
‘The projected time out was a lot less than what it’s turned out to be,' revealed the boss. 'I had a similar injury myself as a player and was out for three months, the worst injury I had so I can certainly sympathise and speak with him about the detail of the injury because it’s not an easy one.
‘I actually re-injured it trying to be too keen to come back so I know it’s a delicate injury. I expected him back quicker but knowing the injury I can see that it’s a difficult one.’
Read the Bournemouth vs Chelsea pre-match briefing
However, there was better news on the fitness of Loftus-Cheek, who has continued to train with the group in recent weeks after being an unused substitute against Tottenham recently.
‘Ruben is in the squad again for tomorrow,' added the boss. 'We haven’t had great opportunity to get Ruben as much game time as much as we want. I felt against Tottenham he could be an impact of some sort in the game but Bayern was a different animal of a game so I took a different decision for him to get some good training in during the week.
‘It would mean a lot to have him back. It’s a lonely place being out for that long. He was in a very good run of form last year. I thought he was playing really well and you could see his development and confidence of getting in the first team.
‘He hasn’t kicked a ball for me but with the ability he’s got, he’s one of the most exciting English midfield players in the Premier League because of the attributes he has so we all want him back.’