Thomas Tuchel has confirmed Kai Havertz is fit to play against Manchester United while also praising the ‘top professional’ that is Romelu Lukaku as he nears a full return to the Chelsea side.
Havertz was not risked in the midweek win over Juventus after sustaining a minor hamstring injury in the victory over Leicester last weekend, but he has since been declared fit for Sunday’s match.
When asked in his pre-match press conference if the striker has recovered in time for Sunday, the boss replied: ‘Yes, he is fit.’
Chelsea are undefeated in all eight games since Lukaku last played for the Blues, and have scored 23 goals since he sustained an ankle injury in the home victory over Malmo in October.
Tuchel’s side responded superbly to losing both Timo Werner and Lukaku in the same match, and our head coach has praised the positive influence the Belgian has in the dressing room, despite being injured.
‘Maybe we shine so bright because Romelu did the hard work before and scored some very decisive goals for us to bring us also in a position from where young players, other players, can take over and step in to show their qualities,’ Tuchel said.
‘The things he brings when he is in the dressing room, when he is in the building, even when he is injured – everyday he is positive, he is determined and he pushes everybody.
‘He is a top a professional and a top striker, he will be super important, he is actually in this moment very important, and I am absolutely happy that we can survive such a strong period without him, Mateo Kovacic, Timo Werner and Christian Pulisic.
‘It shows that we function as a team, that we of course absolutely rely on top-quality players like every team does, but they bring so much more than only their presence on the field.
‘We miss all our players when they are injured, we missed Romelu a lot, but we are capable of finding solutions,’ admitted the Bavarian. ‘This is my job, and the team is doing so well, because Rom is pushing and he is here, he is part of the team. The competition is strong which is a good thing.’ Tuchel
Supporters travelling to Sunday’s game at Stamford Bridge are advised there are closures on the A40 Westway this weekend which may affect car journeys through the northern part of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
Further details of the closures, that will continue for the next few months, can be found here
There are no planned engineering works on the London Underground or Overground lines in the Stamford Bridge area, but fans are recommended to check TFL’s website before travelling.