Mauricio Pochettino issues fitness update on Reece James and Armando Broja ahead of Tottenham clash
James started his first game since August in midweek.
James made only his second start of the season in the Blues’ midweek Carabao Cup victory over Blackburn Rovers.
The Chelsea skipper has been making his way back to full fitness having picked up a hamstring injury in the first game of the season against Liverpool.
The 23-year-old was substituted on the hour against Blackburn, with Pochettino unsure whether the right-back will be able to last the full 90 minutes if selected to start on Monday.
‘I don’t know. We’ll see if he’s available,’ the 51-year-old said. ‘It was good for him to start a game after a few months, he’s a very important player.’
Broja, meanwhile, returned in October after a lengthy spell on the sidelines with a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament but has since suffered a setback with his knee.
The Albanian has been unavailable for the last three games but Pochettino is hopeful that the 22-year-old will be able to play a part in Monday’s London derby and offer support to Nicolas Jackson up front.
‘Today we were talking and maybe he will be available to be on the bench for Monday,’ the Argentine said. ‘I hope he can be involved.’
Elsewhere, Chelsea confirmed that Mykhailo Mudryk has returned to full first-team training after missing the last two fixtures with a minor muscle strain.
Chelsea are looking to bounce back in the Premier League after suffering a disappointing 2-0 defeat against Brentford last weekend.
However, they face a tough task as they travel to face London rivals Spurs who sit top of the Premier League and are yet to lose a league game.
The fixture will also mark Pochettino’s first match against Tottenham since his departure in 2019, with the Argentine saying he’s looking forward to the fixture.
‘It’s strange to come back because always the feeling after four years… it’s going to be, for me, a happy day,’ he said.