Mateo Kovacic

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel has revealed midfielder Mateo Kovacic is set to self-isolate after testing positive for coronavirus. 

Kovacic, who has been on the sidelines with a hamstring injury returned to training on Monday but tested positive for the virus on Tuesday. Speaking ahead of Chelsea’s Champions League match against Zenit Petersberg, Tuchel said, “He was in training yesterday and with a big smile and it was a pure pleasure to have him back.”

“But he tested positive today, for coronavirus, so he’s quarantining for a few days.”

Setback

“It’s a huge setback for him personally and for all of us.”

Team news

“Ben Chilwell is out, N’Golo Kanté is out, Trevoh Chalobah is out, Mateo Kovačić is out, and Jorginho is out.”

Fitness

“We had a bit of an acute overload due to injuries and the schedule. Due to our injuries in some positions, like central midfield, when we struggle. The game tomorrow is not the problem, it’s more the game that comes up on Saturday.”

“We had an early game against West Ham and then a late-game against Zenit. We had a day off and a good training session today. We can let anybody play of the 17 players plus goalkeepers we have.”

“The problem is the next match on Saturday because we will lose time to sleep, arrive back very early on Thursday, and then we face an intense team in Leeds who have prepared to face this match.”

The Blues have already qualified for the last 16 of the Champions League but will be keen to finish at the top of Group H.

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