Cole Palmer doubtful for Chelsea’s London derby clash with Arsenal


Chelsea striker Cole Palmer missed Monday’s training due to illness and his availability for tonight’s Premier League match against Arsenal is a major doubt.

Palmer has had a stunning season with the Blues, scoring 20 Premier League goals (joint most with Manchester City’s Erling Haaland) and providing nine in 28 games assists.

The 21-year-old scored four goals in Chelsea’s last league game, a 6-0 win over Everton, and featured in Saturday’s FA Cup semi-final loss to Manchester City. Despite taking an early knock and having some straps on his thigh, he played the full 90 minutes at Wembley.

But Palmer is unfit and could miss Mauricio Pochettino’s side for the London derby against title challengers Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.

“We need to assess [Tuesday]”, Pochettino said of Palmer’s chances. “Today, no, I don’t believe he can be involved. Even if he performs well tomorrow, he might not be able to play.

“With or without him, we believe we can win. The most important thing is collectively. Of course, he is an important part of the team. He does a great job for us. But we have a lot of players who can perform and do the job. players.

Mauricio Pochettino has defended the contribution of striker Nicholas Jackson in his first season at the club after he missed several chances against Manchester City to help Chelsea reach the final. The 22-year-old has improved significantly in recent weeks following his £32m move from Villarreal in the summer, but has failed to make the most of his three games at Wembley Take advantage of gaps.

Pochettino has been forced to rely on a player who has scored 10 league goals far more than the club expected, while fellow signing Christopher Nkunku has only played due to injury since joining RB Leipzig. A few games.

Cole Palmer has been outstanding for Chelsea this season (Getty Images)

“The first season is always difficult, but when you’re a striker and you have to perform well and score goals, it’s even more difficult. Everyone expects to score every time they touch the ball. “He’s ours The main striker and our only fit forward. He did a great job for the team; running, scoring goals, assisting in his first season as a young lad, coming from Spain. Not much experience.

“If we want to match this player up with the iconic players here, if we compare him to Didier Drogba, obviously he will lose. But he will have my full support. Even if he doesn’t score, he plays for The way the club fights with his teammates also creates opportunities and he will undoubtedly be better next season.

Chelsea defender Marlo Gusteau is also likely to be absent, as French defender Marlo Gusteau is out injured and will need to be replaced late in the game against Manchester City. Pochettino still has several players missing in the long term, including Nkunku, Romeo Lavia, Levi Colwell, Wesley Fofana and captain Reece James, while Ben Chilwell is also being assessed.

Chelsea are currently ninth in the Premier League table, but a win would see them climb to seventh and join Newcastle and Manchester United on 50 points. Arsenal, meanwhile, are top of the league but cannot afford mistakes as they try to hold off Liverpool and Manchester City in the title race.

The Gunners beat Wolves on Saturday to return to winning ways after being knocked out of the Champions League last weekend with a loss to Aston Villa and defeat to Bayern Munich.

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta said: “The win gives us a huge energy boost and we will be looking forward to a London derby and everyone is ready for it.” “I think [Chelsea] When you look at what they do and how they perform in games, they should be higher in the league.

“When you look at their squad, they have quality; much better than people think. We will definitely have a tough game tomorrow.

He added: “We are in a good position in the Premier League. We have been like this for nine months… and we really want to give it a real try. We are really determined to do what we do and try to lift trophies.

Arsenal vs Chelsea will be shown live on TNT Sports 1 at 8pm



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