Player News - Chelsea

Date: Team: Pos:

Michy Batshuayi has been given every chance to prove his fitness after Roberto Martinez included the Chelsea striker in his 28-man squad for Russia.

The 24-year-old was enjoying a highly productive loan spell at Borussia Dortmund [7-goals + one assist] from nine Bundesliga starts before suffering a serious injury last month. The club confirmed that Batshuayi had rolled his left ankle following a challenge from Schalke 04 midfielder Benjamin Stambouli causing ligament damage. Although no official timeline was proposed, Roberto Martinez always maintained it was "possible" that he could be fit for the Red Devils World Cup campaign. Belgium face Portugal in a pre-tournament friendly on June 02 before the squad will be cut to 23 two days later. Fellow Premier League players Vincent Kompany and Kevin de Bruyne [Man City], Eden Hazard [Chelsea], Marouane Fellaini and Romelu Lukaku [Man United] and Christian Benteke [Crystal Palace] also make the squad but Divock Origi [Liverpool] and Kevin Mirallas [Everton] miss out.
May 22 - 5:39 AM

Marcos Alonso will not feature at the World Cup finals after he was axed from Spain’s World Cup squad.

The Chelsea defender had been widely tipped to be included in the group travelling to Russia after another solid season at Stamford Bridge, but Alonso was one of four Chelsea players to be snubbed by Julen Lopetegui. The Spain coach instead elected to take Arsenal full-back Monreal: "Nacho has come with us many times," he said during Mondays press conference. "We know him well and we are convinced he will help us." There was no place for Alvaro Morata either who had been a regular up until March, but injury and a lack of form ultimately cost the former Real Madrid striker despite his five-goals during the qualification campaign: "It's not easy and the doubt always exists. In the case of Morata, he's had a complex season but he could have come. He hasn't because another player has convinced us more." Cesc Fabregas and Pedro Rodriguez complete the Chelsea contingent missing out this summer.
Source: Eurosport
May 21 - 4:04 PM

Just days after shrouding his Chelsea future in doubt, Eden Hazard fired home the penalty to ensure Chelsea's season did not end trophyless with the 2018 FA Cup adding to their accolades.

José Mourinho tried to nullify the threat of Hazard with a tactic which had previously been successful: using Ander Herrera in a man marking role. However the Belgian Number 10 outsmarted his former boss by dragging Herrera further back the pitch, removing the Spaniard from the three man midfield which unlocks Paul Pogba. Perhaps that was the reason behind United's lack of drive in the first half. They failed to reply to Chelsea's penalty earnt and scored by the same player until after the interval. Sanchez thought he had levelled proceedings but his goal was correctly adjudged to have been offside thanks to VAR, whilst Courtois was equal to a Marcus Rashford effort. Pogba had United's best opportunity late on, but his free header failed to hit the target.
Source: BBC Sport
May 19 - 3:02 PM

Chelsea missed out on a place in next season's Champions League after a poor display in a 3-0 defeat at Newcastle.

Chelsea entered the match in need of a win and a Liverpool defeat against Brighton to secure a top-four finish. However, Antonio Conte's side did not look like a team fighting for European football. Last year's champions fell behind when Dwight Gayle headed home from close-range after 23 minutes, before Ayoze Perez scored in the 59th and 63rd minute to make it 3-0. Chelsea did have a pair of chances before the match slipped away, but Ross Barkley's clear opportunity was well blocked and Olivier Giroud's flick was denied by Martin Dubravka. The Blues, who finish the season in fifth place, now turn their attention to the FA Cup final against Manchester United on Saturday.
Source: NBC Sports
May 13 - 1:40 PM

Thibaut Courtois headlined the list of players left out on a frustrating night at Stamford Bridge as Chelsea had to settle for a 1-1 draw with Huddersfield Town.

Antonio Conte made six changes to the side which beat Liverpool last week, as Willy Caballero replaced Courtois, who missed out with a back injury. Andreas Christensen and Davide Zappacosta replaced Gary Cahill and Victor Moses in defense, while Pedro and Willian came in for Hazard and Giroud. Caballero has been a solid number two this season, but the absence of Courtois was felt when Chelsea conceded on 50 minutes. Caballero raced off his line but was beaten to a ball over the top by Laurent Depoitre, who stayed on his feet after contact and poked the ball into the back of the net. Should Courtois miss the season finale on Sunday, then Caballero will likely make another start.
May 9 - 6:07 PM

Chelsea's hopes of a Top Four finish were dealt a serious blow after drawing 1-1 with Huddersfield Town on Wednesday.

In what could prove to be Antonio Conte's final match in charge at Stamford Bridge, his side dominated possession but were guilty of quality missed chances. Antonio Rudiger fired over from point-blank in the 13th minute, while Morata rounded Lossl but couldn't finish from a tight angle. Huddersfield took the lead through Laurent Depoitre in the 50th minute, but Chelsea equalized in the 62nd when a Town clearance smashed Alonso in the face and fly into the net. Despite a potent press late on, Jonas Lossl was on hand to deny Andreas Christensen's close-range header off the post late in the match. The result means Chelsea must now win away at Newcastle on Sunday and hope for Liverpool to lose at Brighton in order to qualify for the Champions League.
Source: NBC Sports
May 9 - 5:45 PM

While everyone dropped points at the top of the table, Chelsea were able to get withing striking distance of a Champions League spot after a huge 1-0 win over Liverpool.

Not one goal was scored among the top four clubs this weekend, and Chelsea are suddenly very much in the hunt for a CL spot. They caught the Reds at the right time, as they failed to score in consecutive matches for the first time all season. After staving off an early push by the Reds, Chelsea would grab the long goal shortly after the half hour mark, when Victor Moses sent in a cross from the right that Olivier Giroud was able to head home. Eden Hazard put in a man of the match performance, acting as the focal point when Chelsea were on the ball, but the defense deserves the bulk of the credit, particularly Antonio Rudiger, who effectively shut down the hottest player on the planet in Salah.
Source: NBC Sports
May 6 - 7:59 PM

Antonio Conte is hoping that Alvaro Morata can return to the matchday squad on Wednesday after missing the win over Liverpool due to injury.

The Chelsea boss is planning to make changes against Huddersfield knowing that three-points could take his side into a Champions League qualification spot by leapfrogging London-rivals Tottenham: "We'll have to make rotations on Wednesday because today took a lot of energy from us. Then we'll see what happens. It's important to approach this situation with great pride and a great will to fight, to show we are still alive." Andreas Christensen, Davide Zappacosta, Willian and Pedro are among those pushing for a recall while Sundays match winner – Olivier Giroud – could make way if Morata is passed fit. "It's not serious. In my mind, there is the intention for him to be in contention for the game against Huddersfield. I hope," Conte said. "The injury is not serious. I hope to recover him, also because today, on the bench, we had no strikers."
May 6 - 5:58 PM

Cesc Fabregas scored his 50th Premier League goal to lead Chelsea to a 1-0 win against Swansea City.

On a rainy day in South Wales, Antonio Conte packed his midfield with a 3-5-2 formation and went with Olivier Giroud up front. Emerson retained his place with Marcos Alonso still suspended and Gary Cahill started in central defense in place of Andreas Christensen. Chelsea needed just four minutes to take the lead and did so in fine fashion. Eden Hazard created the goal as he drove forward and slipped a composed through ball to Fabregas who curled a fine effort into the top corner. The second half saw Swansea improve and throw more numbers forward, but the late push went unrewarded. The victory puts Chelsea two points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, who host Watford on Monday.
Source: NBC Sports
Apr 28 - 3:01 PM

Chelsea manager Antonio Conte hinted that Andreas Christensen could once again cede his starting spot to Gary Cahill.

The Danish international has only played once in the last three Premier League matches and Conte suggested that Cahill is more deserving of the start, although didn't say if Antonio Rudiger will maintain his spot given that he is open to rotating the squad. Said the manager: "I have opportunities to make rotations with the three defenders, and try to make the best decision game by game. Christensen is having an important season, his first for Chelsea with this pressure. Now it’s right to give the opportunity to Gary to play more. He is deserving this."
Source: Chelsea FC
Apr 27 - 11:04 AM

Marcos Alonso will miss the FA Cup semi-final against Southampton on Sunday after being handed a three-match retroactive ban for violent conduct.

The incident occurred in the first-half of Chelsea's 3-2 Premier League win at Southampton on Saturday when TV footage showed Alonso catching Shane Long with his studs up. The 27-year-old denied the charge and further said that if proven guilty the suspension would excessive, but his appeal was rejected following an independent commission hearing on Wednesday. In his absence against Burnley on Thursday, Emerson was handed his first PL start. Alonso will be eligible to return on May 6 against Liverpool, meaning he will miss Sunday's FA Cup semi-final clash with Southampton and trip to Swansea City next weekend.
Source: Sky Sports
Apr 19 - 7:01 PM

Chelsea continued their push for a top-four finish with a crucial 2-1 win at Burnley on Thursday.

Antonio Conte made six changes from the side that beat Southampton at the weekend. Eden Hazard dropped to the bench, Emerson was brought in for Marcos Alonso, and Olivier Giroud paired with Alvaro Morata in a two-man attack. Chelsea took the lead on 20 minutes when Victor Moses' cross deflected off Burnley defender Kevin Long and over the line for an own-goal. After Alvaro Morata missed a one-on-one chance with Nick Pope earlier in the second-half, the Clarets equalized when Johan Berg Gudmunddson's shot took a deflection off Ashley Barnes and nestled into the bottom corner. However, the visitors got the decisive goal five minutes later. Emerson provided the cross for Moses, who collected the ball and smashed it home at the near post. Chelsea now trail fourth-placed Tottenham by five points with four matches remaining.
Source: BBC Sport
Apr 19 - 5:32 PM

Chelsea may have to do without its star fullback in Marcos Alonso if he is proven guilty of violent conduct.

The FA has officially issued the Spaniard with a charge of violent conduct after reviewing a late challenge from behind on Shane Long in Chelsea's 3-2 comeback win on Saturday over Southampton. If found guilty, Alonso would miss at least three games and potentially more depending on whether the committee finds his actions worthy of a more serious punishment. Southampton manager Mark Hughes took offense to the challenge, calling it reckless: "Shane's got a gash down the calf, having seen it again there's a clear red card. There's clear intent to hurt Shane, it was raked down the back of the calf. It's a dangerous tackle and could have broken his leg, in my view, and how the three officials who were near it all missed it was a mystery to me."
Source: Sky Sports
Apr 17 - 1:57 PM

Olivier Giroud, who has had a knack for delivering off of the bench in recent seasons, did so again today in dramatic fashion, as his brace led Chelsea from two down to a 2-3 win at Southampton.

Southampton were in control with twenty minutes left to play, but the Blues struck three times in an eight minute span to grab the win. In the first half, both sides had their chances but the Saints would take the lead and Chelsea were lucky to have Marcos Alonso escape what looked like a foul worthy of a straight red. Despite the Saints doubling the lead on the hour mark, Giroud's presence turned the game quickly. First, he headed home a ball from Alonso on 70 minutes. Five minutes later, Eden Hazard struck from close range after a low cross from Willian. Moments later, the turnaround was complete as Giroud put away a failed clearance. The defense continues to struggle but Chelsea showed today that their attack is capable of exploding at any moment.
Source: NBC Sports
Apr 14 - 9:35 AM

Cesar Azpilicueta's opener was cancelled out by Javier Hernandez midway through the second-half as Chelsea drew 1-1 with West Ham at Stamford Bridge.

The Blues welcomed back Thibaut Courtois and captain Gary Cahill in central defense, with Andreas Christensen dropped to the bench. The home side was lively in the early stages as Alvaro Morata went close with an inventive backheel before Willian forced a strong save from West Ham goalkeeper Joe Hart. Chelsea, though, found the breakthrough on the resulting corner. Moses crossed for Morata who headed the ball across goal for Azpilicueta, who did well to control the ball with a flick and poked it home past Hart. Despite dominating the match, Chelsea paid the price late when Hernandez scored just three minutes later his introduction on 70 minutes. Marcos Alonso and substitute Olivier Giroud went close in the final stages, but Hart produced a pair of acrobatic saves. With six matches remaining, Chelsea trail fourth-placed Tottenham by 10 points.
Source: NBC Sports
Apr 8 - 2:51 PM


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