RUBEN LOFTUS-CHEEK OUT FOR THE REST OF JANUARY

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Chelsea midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek is set to miss the rest of Chelsea games this January after revealing he needs to take a long break to fully recover from a back injury.

Loftus-Cheek was substituted three minutes before half-time in Chelsea’s 2-0 FA Cup win over Nottingham Forest due to a reoccurrence of a back injury that has troubled the midfielder for some time now.

The back injury was the reason why the 22-year-old missed consecutive matches against Watford and Crystal Palace over the Christmas period.

“It’s not good. I have been struggling with it for the last few weeks,” Loftus-Cheek said, according to Standard Sport.

“I’m going to have to take some proper time out to make sure it heals properly. I’m gutted.”

Chelsea have six more fixtures to play in the month of January and Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri won’t be a happy man at the moment with Pedro and Willian also sidelined.

Loftus-Cheek has been playing regularly recently under Sarri and he had a great chance of being involved in the first leg of the Carabao Cup semifinal with Tottenham on Tuesday night because Pedro (hamstring) and Willian (calf) have been sidelined.

With Pedro, Willian and Loftus-Cheek struggling with injuries, Chelsea youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi is in contention to start against Tottenham on Tuesday.

Chelsea coach Carlo Cudicini talked about Loftus-Cheek’s injury and Hudson-Odoi’s chances of playing against Tottenham.

“We are very sorry for the kid (Loftus-Cheek) to be honest. His impact on the games he played so far has been very good,” Cudicini said after the game against Nottingham Forest.

“It’s something that is affecting him and something we need to look at resolving. Obviously, it’s been going on for a while and now he will probably have to stop for a bit to try to resolve it.

“Hudson-Odoi did very well, it was a very good performance (against Nottingham Forest). Two assists and he worked very hard defensively. Even when we had a few problems in midfield with (Ethan) Ampadu, he was running for two.

“His commitment was great and you want him to have performances like that so he can put some doubts in Maurizio’s mind and be in contention for a place.”

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OTONY
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