Date: 16th December 2021 at 2:09pm
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Chelsea host struggling Everton on Thursday, needing a win to keep the pressure on Manchester City at the top of the Premier League table. 

Thomas Tuchel’s side got back to winning ways against Leeds United on Saturday, having drawn with both Manchester United and Burnley and lost to West Ham United in the last month.

The visit of the lowly Toffees, who have won just five of 16 league games this season and have won just once in their last ten.

Chelsea will however be without a number of key stars, with three unnamed players having tested positive for Covid-19 in Wednesday’s round of testing.

The trio join Mateo Kovacic, who is still isolating having tested positive last week, as well as Ben Chilwell who remains out with a knee injury sustained against Juventus in the Champions League last month.

While N’Golo Kante and Trevoh Chalobah are both expected to return, Tuchel faces a number of tricky selection decisions ahead of the visit of Everton.

Chilwell’s injury isn’t as bad as first feared but the left-back still won’t return to action any time soon

With Chilwell’s injury in mind, it appears that the German is already planning ho to cope with the defender’s injury, and it appears that he may delve into the transfer market next month.

Ahead of Thursday’s game, Tuchel admitted that he may opt to sign reinforcements to provide cover while the Englishman is out.

“First, we must be sure what to do with Ben,” he said.

Then we decide if we go for internal solutions and if we trust that we can overcome this period.

“Everything depends on Ben Chilwell and how long he is out. Then on the alternatives, if there is something to do, if there is a chance to do something.

“But we did not start this process because we want to protect ourselves and not lose focus on the most important things.  The most important things right now and Ben and Marcos. From there we go.”

It had been reported that Chelsea would choose to recall young left-back Ian Maatsen from his season-long loan spell at Coventry City, in order to provide cover and competition for Marcos Alonso in the left wing-back role.

The 19-year-old has impressed so far in the Championship, and is held in high regard by those at Stamford Bridge.

With the likes of Reece James and Mason Mount having established themselves in the first team at Stamford Bridge, Maatsen will be eyeing a similar path to the top at Chelsea.

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