Full Chelsea squad revealed for top-four Tottenham clash as Tuchel deals with defensive absences


Chelsea are dealing with a raft of defensive injuries and absences as they prepare to face Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday afternoon. The Blues have struggled in recent weeks, falling off their title-challenging pace of early in the season and could be dragged into a battle for the top four with a defeat.

They currently sit eight points clear of Tottenham, but Antonio Conte's side have four games in hand on their London rivals and have shown much- improved resolve and quality since the former Chelsea boss took over from Nuno Espirito Santo earlier in the season.

Even Arsenal in sixth could equal Chelsea's points tally if they were to win their three games in hand, while West Ham United and Manchester United lurk in the background. Chelsea have not won a league game since Boxing Day - a 3-1 win over Aston Villa - and are coming off a disappointing 1-1 draw with Brighton in midweek. 

Their defensive deficiencies have become clear, with the long-term absences of Reece James and Ben Chilwell causing issues in the wing-back positions. The pair are again set to miss the match against Spurs, while Andreas Christensen has tested positive for Covid-19 and will be absent. Trevoh Chalobah, meanwhile, is nearing a return from a thigh injury but Sunday's game will come too soon for him, only adding to Tuchel's headache.

"We have a timeframe [on Reece’s return] but we will not make it public because we will just get asked about the timeframe," said Tuchel.

"He is back on the pitch which is good news, but he is in individual training so far away from being a part of the squad for Sunday.

"Trevoh Chalobah is back in team training but also way too early to play the game on Sunday at this kind of level. So actually nobody is coming back, it’s the same squad.

"We decided to give them two days off to disconnect a little bit, but the two days alone will not solve everything." "

With that said, here’s a look at the squad available for the game.

Goalkeepers: Kepa Arrizabalaga, Marcus Bettinelli.

Defenders: Antonio Rudiger, Malang Sarr, Marcos Alonso, Cesar Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Lewis Hall.

Midfielders: Mateo Kovacic, Saul Niguez, Jorginho, N'Golo Kante, Ross Barkley, Mason Mount, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Harvey Vale, Xavier Simons, Charlie Webster, Lewis Baker, Kenedy.

Forwards: Hakim Ziyech, Kai Havertz, Christian Pulisic, Timo Werner, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Romelu Lukaku, Jude Soonsup-Bell.

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