Chelsea have received a major boost ahead of their FA Cup quarter-final clash against Everton, with captain John Terry travelling to Liverpool with the first-team squad for the cup tie.
The Englishman hasn’t featured for the Blues since their 5-1 thrashing of Newcastle United last month, but manager Guus Hiddink revealed in his pre-match press conference on Friday that the Chelsea captain has a chance of playing at Goodison Park.
Addressing Terry’s injury situation, Hiddink said (via chelseafc.com): “He worked rather well in the past days and he will be included in the travelling list. Of course, he has not practised a lot in the last weeks and days.
“I will see today whether there is a reaction to yesterday’s training. I would like him to travel to Liverpool.”
Meanwhile, attacking midfielder Eden Hazard is also available for selection, despite being substituted in his side’s 2-1 loss to PSG in the Champions League in midweek.
“He is not absent of injury,” said the Chelsea manager of the Belgian. “You can have an injury where you cannot play but you can have one where you can play but you are not fully fit.
“That also has an influence on the freshness and it’s true that’s a worry. He will be okay. He will be available. He’s desperate to participate in the team performance.”
The in-form Diego Costa was also forced to leave the pitch due to injury on Wednesday, and Hiddink claimed that the Spain international would face a late fitness test ahead of the game against Everton.
“He went off and had some problems,” added the 69-year-old. “Yesterday he had rest and treatment, today the same, so I will see how he is. It’s in his hip.”
Terry return could mean defensive reset
John Terry’s hamstring issues came at just the wrong time for Chelsea, particularly since young French defender Kurt Zouma is out for the season with an anterior cruciate ligament injury.
The absence of the Blues’ captain forced right-back Branislav Ivanović to play in central defence, with César Azpilicueta moving to right-back, and Abdul Baba Rahman and Kenedy sharing the responsibilities at left-back.
Azpilicueta has looked far from his assured self in what is supposed to be his ‘natural’ position, while both Baba Rahman and Kenedy have struggled with their defensive positioning. Terry’s return is likely to see the Spaniard return to left-back, while vice-captain Ivanović once again moves to the right.