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Chelsea dealt double injury blow ahead of Man United - 385sports by adminchuck(m) : 11:30 am On Apr 23, 2019
CULLED FROM 385SPORTS.COM: Chelsea were tonight dealt a pair of blows on the injury-front, during the club’s clash with Burnley.
Maurizio Sarri’s men welcomed Burnley to Stamford Bridge a short time ago, in a crucial outing in their pursuit of a top-4 berth.
The Blues headed into the matchup sitting in 5th-place in the Premier League table, behind Tottenham and Arsenal respectively.
However, the defeats suffered by both of their capital rivals, along with Manchester United, over the course of the weekend, meant that Chelsea entered proceedings this evening aware that a victory would vault them into 3rd in the English top-flight table.
Wilfried Zaha celebrates during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Crystal Palace. (Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)
When all was said and done, though, Sarri’s side failed to get the job done.
A frenetic opening 25 minutes at Stamford Bridge saw 4 goals shared between the sides, as Burnley took firm advantage of their hosts’ set-piece shortcomings.
The game’s scoring was opened inside 10 minutes, when a corner for the away side saw the ball drop to the edge of the box for Jeff Hendrick to volley home in spectacular fashion.
Chelsea soon pulled level, though, as N’Golo Kante finished Eden Hazard’s pull-back off with aplomb.
And Gonzalo Higuain went on to turn the clash firmly on its head just 2 minutes later, rifling home off the underside of the crossbar from an acute angle.
Burnley, though, showcased their mettle to pull level with 24 minutes on the clock, as another set-piece saw Ashley Barnes arrive unmarked at the back post to slot beyond the helpless Kepa.
Chelsea largely-dominated over the game’s remaining hour but, in the end, failed to showcase the necessary guile to break down the visitors’ stout backline for a 3rd-time.
As such, Maurizio Sarri’s men were forced to settle for a point.
And an all-round disappointing evening’s work for the Blues was also compounded by a pair of blows on the injury-front.
The first player to have picked up a fitness problem was Callum Hudson-Odoi.
The English wide-man pulled up towards the end of the first-half, before attempting to push through his issue.
However, after being tended to by Chelsea’s physio team, the 18-year-old was soon forced to limp off, in what appeared to be some degree of pain.
And the Londoners’ personnel woes were doubled soon after, as N’Golo Kante failed to reemerge for the second-half.
Though there has been no official word on the Frenchman, he is thought to have picked up a back injury.
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