Chelsea youngster Reece James is expected to be fit and available for selection when Arsenal come visiting for a Premier League fixture on Tuesday night.
Chelsea will be looking to close down the gap to third-placed Leicester City when they lock horns with local rivals Arsenal in a London Derby at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday. And manager Frank Lampard has provided a fitness update regarding his full-back Reece James, who walked off injured against Newcastle United last time out.
Speaking in his pre-match presser, Lampard said, “He’s got an injury to the back of his knee area. It’s not as bad as it could have been or we maybe thought so he’s in contention for tomorrow but it’s going to be a tight call. We’ll give him another 24 hours to see if it settles down but it’s settled down pretty quickly so far.”
“I was concerned because he had injuries at the start of the season with his ankle but when it wasn’t that I was quite happy. Hopefully he’ll be involved tomorrow, if not for the weekend,” the Chelsea boss added. Judging by his statements, there is a very good chance that James will be available for the game and should start against Arsenal.
Marcos Alonso is also fit and available, having missed the last few matches with a thigh injury. However, the Spaniard is unlikely to start, with captain Cesar Azpilicueta edging him out for the left-back slot. Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen should continue their centre-half partnership against Arsenal. Kepa Arrizabalaga is the obvious choice in goal for Chelsea.
N’Golo Kante returned from an injury in the last game against Newcastle and should feature once again from kick-off. Jorginho is a certain starter at the base of the three-man midfield for the Blues, but there is likely to be one possible change as Mateo Kovacic should come in for Mason Mount, who was quite ineffective last time out.
No changes are expected in attack with Christian Pulisic still out on the sidelines. Callum Hudson-Odoi and Willian ought to occupy the flanks once again for Chelsea, with top goalscorer Tammy Abraham spearheading the Blues’ attack when Arsenal come visiting.
Chelsea Predicted Lineup (4-3-3): Kepa; James, Rudiger, Christensen, Azpilicueta; Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic; Willian, Abraham, Hudson-Odoi