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Football

Lukaku and Werner to miss at least next two matches, Tuchel confirms

Lukaku and Werner FTD
Chelsea forwards Romalu Lukaku and Timo Werner. | PHOTO: The Sun |

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel has confirmed his side will be without forwards Romelu Lukaku and Timo Werner for at least the next two matches.

Club-record signing Romelu Lukaku was injured by a tackle from Lasse Nielsen that resulted in a penalty Jorginho confidently scored to add to Andreas Christensen’s opener in Wednesday’s 4-0 thrashing of Malmo in the Champions League at Stamford Bridge.

Kai Havertz replaced Lukaku and scored Chelsea’s third before playing a role in another spot-kick for the Blues converted by Jorginho, though Chelsea also lost Werner to a hamstring injury who was replaced by Callum Hudson-Odoi.

Lukaku injury

Romelu Lukaku was forced out of the Malmo tie on Wednesday 20, Oct due to an injury and the forward will miss the next two matches for Chelsea, Thomas Tuchel has confirmed. | PHOTO: The Athletic |

Chelsea faces the Premier League’s bottom side Norwich City this afternoon, before going up against Southampton in the EFL Cup on Tuesday.

Though Tuchel refused to put a definitive period on the return of his two first-choice strikers, the former Paris Saint-Germain boss revealed neither will play a part in at least the next two games.

“They’re both out for tomorrow, all three of them are out for tomorrow,” Tuchel told a news conference, also referring to Christian Pulisic, who has been out since suffering an ankle injury while on international duty in September.

“No big news, for Romelu and Timo the thing I can say is they are out tomorrow and the Southampton game and from there we will see what’s next.

“I don’t think it makes any sense to speculate how long it will be. The fact is you never know, things can be shorter or longer than expected. The one thing I can tell you for sure is both are in treatment, both are positive but are out for the next two games for sure.”

Tuchel’s decision to play Lukaku against Malmo has been questioned, with the striker having recently left Belgium’s Nations League Finals camp early due to muscle fatigue and Tuchel himself admitting that the Belgian has been ‘overplayed’.

With Chelsea’s fixtures before the next international break comparatively kind with trips to Newcastle United and Malmo follow the Southampton match, before a home game with Burnley on November 6, Tuchel was asked if Lukaku’s enforced break had come at a good time.

“No, never a good thing, honestly never a good thing,” Tuchel continued.

“Mentally, he was a bit overplayed, like other players in our squad, but that does not mean we have to rest them. Jorginho and Mason Mount are in the same spot but they played a fantastic match, so it is like this, they played a lot of competitions with a lot of enthusiasm and personal targets.”

Chelsea

Thomas Tuchel was speaking to the media ahead of the Chelsea match against Norwich in the Premier League on Saturday 23, October. | PHOTO: Football. London |

“It was not a muscle injury, it was an accident. It is just some percentage, don’t underestimate the effort these players go through.

“If you constantly turn the wheel, and the guy wants to turn it, take the responsibility, you can get tired. These little things can make a difference.”

Chelsea allowed three forwards, Tammy Abraham, Olivier Giroud, and Michy Batshuayi to leave in the last transfer window, but Tuchel has no regrets over that decision.

“You cannot keep a squad of 40 players,” he added. “If you think Oli, Tammy, and Michy would be in the perfect shape now but hadn’t made it into the 20-man squad, then would they be in the perfect shape?

“Of course in theory it would be like this, but [not] in real life. Nobody wants this to happen, it’s a bit of bad luck that we have two injured players in the same position, we have to find solutions, there is no worry about the decisions.”

Tuchel hinted that he will have to use Kai Havertz as a striker who did well in that position towards the end of last season even scoring in the Champions  League finals playing as a false 9.

Nathan Sialah is a journalist by profession with interest in politics, sports, cryptocurrency and human interests with 5 years experience in Radio and Digital Journalism. This has helped Sialah develop a responsible approach to any task he undertakes or any situation that he is presented with.

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