Ben Chilwell picked up an injury as Chelsea beat Brighton & Hove Albion to book their place in the EFL Cup fourth round on Wednesday, and Mauricio Pochettino says he’s fearing the worst. The 26-year-old played a full 90 minutes against the Seasiders but limped off with what appeared to be a hamstring injury late on and potentially faces weeks on the sidelines.
“I think it is bad news from what the doctor told me,” Pochettino said after the match per Daily Mail. “It is not a good thing. It looks a bad injury, but we need to assess in the next few days and we will see the period he will be out. We are really sad about the news about Ben. We need to assess in the next few days.”
Colwill will have to stay at left-back
Chilwell has made seven appearances in all competitions this season, mostly featuring as a left wing-back or left-sided midfielder. He’s skippered the side on four occasions and was having a good start to the new campaign before the injury. Chelsea have options in his stead with Levi Colwill, Marc Cucurella and Ian Maatsen able to deputise, but the 26-year-old will be a loss.
Pochettino started Colwill on the left for Chelsea’s last two Premier League outings, so he’s likely to keep his place in Chilwell’s absence. The 20-year-old is a natural centre-back, however, so it leaves the manager short on options in the middle – Axel Disasi and Thiago Silva are the only fit and available defenders with Wesley Fofana (knee), Benoit Badiashile (thigh) and Trevoh Chalobah (thigh) sidelined.
Chilwell likely to miss all of October’s games
The exact timeframe of Chilwell’s injury is unknown, but he’s expected to miss Chelsea’s trip to face Fulham on Monday, October 2 and their trip to face Burnley on Saturday, October 7. After that, the Blues don’t play until Saturday, October 21 when Arsenal come to Stamford Bridge, but it’s hard to see Chilwell returning after three weeks.
Chelsea’s injury list is growing with Fofana, Chalobah, Badiashile, Christopher Nkunku (knee), Romeo Lavia (ankle), Reece James (thigh), Carney Chukwuemeka (knee), Noni Madueke (doubt) and Marcus Bettinelli (knee) currently out of action, per Premier Injuries, so this is the last thing Pochettino needed.