Friday, June 14, 2024

Chelsea press conference: Pochettino on fitness of Gusto, Chilwell and Palmer

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Mauricio Pochettino says a decision on whether Cole Palmer is fit to face Arsenal will be made tomorrow (Tuesday) morning – and the Chelsea head coach has also given updates on injuries suffered by Malo Gusto and Ben Chilwell.

Palmer completed 90 minutes on Saturday as the Blues were narrowly beaten in the FA Cup semi-final by Manchester City. However, ahead of our trip to the Emirates, the 21-year-old is suffering from illness.

That has kept Palmer out of team training and Pochettino admits a late call will be made over the England international.

‘We need to assess tomorrow (Tuesday) morning but today I don’t believe he can be involved,’ said the Blues head coach at his pre-match press conference.

‘We need to assess tomorrow and then decide. Even if he is feeling better tomorrow, maybe he is not in a condition to play. We hope he recovers from this situation and can be involved again as soon as possible.

‘With or without Cole we always believe we can win. The most important thing is the team and the collective. He is an important part of the team and is doing fantastic for us, but we are Chelsea and we have plenty of players that can perform and do the job.’

Alongside Palmer in the starting XI on Saturday was Gusto, who completed 79 minutes before being replaced by Axel Disasi. Chilwell, meanwhile, played the closing minutes having been introduced for Marc Cucurella.

Both are undergoing medical assessments ahead of our clash with Arsenal, and Pochettino delivered more detail on their respective injuries.

‘I am not a doctor but I try to translate what is going on,’ he said. ‘Malo suffered a problem with a ligament in his knee, we hope it’s not a big issue. Chilly has the same problem he has suffered in the last few weeks [with his knee) after being with the national team.’

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