Chelsea could dip into this month’s transfer window as they have some players sidelined with long-term injuries, manager Thomas Tuchel revealed.
Left back Ben Chilwell is likely to miss the rest of the season after undergoing knee surgery last month, while defender Trevoh Chalobah and right back Reece James have been out due to hamstring injuries.
“We are discussing and are in talks with the staff, board and scouting,” Tuchel told reporters before Saturday’s FA Cup third-round tie at home to fifth-tier Chesterfield.
“We are checking the possibilities which we would always do.
“After our long-term injuries, we are looking into the market possibilities. Not under the highest pressure but things have to make sense for us.”
Meanwhile the Chelsea boss insisted Antonio Rudiger will not need any “pampering” as the club continue talks with the Germany defender over a new Stamford Bridge contract.
Rudiger’s deal expires in the summer and the 28-year-old can now negotiate an agreement with overseas clubs, with Real Madrid and Paris St Germain among those keen on his services.
The commanding centre-back has excelled under Tuchel and Chelsea remain determined to convince him to stay in west London.
But the Blues boss believes actions will speak louder than words when it comes to the quest to retain the 49-cap defender.
“I don’t know if it helps if I take him out for a lot of coffees, maybe it pushes him out,” said a chuckling Tuchel.
“I don’t feel that he needs a lot of coffees with me; he’s a guy who needs to trust you, he needs to feel the connection, to feel the trust, and he wants to feel it by minutes and by actions.
“I don’t feel Toni that he needs a lot of words, pampering, coffee talks and invitations to dinners and whatever. He’s a top professional, this is what he has proved. He’s very important and nothing has changed.
“We’re in talks, it’s in good hands, because I trust the club 100 per cent and I have trust in my player. So it’s a no-problem situation for me, obviously also for Toni.
“He can still deliver, he had a fantastic match now in a back-four, so he’s super reliable.”
Chelsea will host non-league Chesterfield in Saturday’s FA Cup third-round clash, where Tuchel could resist the temptation to field a clutch of youngsters and ease the heavy fixture burden on senior players.
Thiago Silva and N’Golo Kante will continue their Covid-19 isolation, but Andreas Christensen could return after back trouble.
Kai Havertz will be able to play despite a broken finger and Cesar Azpilicueta avoided a muscle injury in the 2-0 Carabao Cup win over Tottenham, instead suffering just cramp.
While Tuchel will rotate Chelsea’s resources, he will also impress upon his players the importance of treating this encounter as seriously as any other.
“You can lose any game in football, that’s why the game’s so popular,” said Tuchel. “So you will never hear me say we can’t lose, that would be hugely arrogant.
“That’s not the attitude we want to approach the game tomorrow. Of course we are favourites, we have the advantage of having no travel and we can play in front of our own fans.
“So yes we are huge favourites, yes we want to win and we demand it of ourselves, but we still respect the game and any opponent.