Chelsea confident defensive trio fully fit after World Cup

Chelsea management expect Ben Chilwell, Wesley Fofana and Reece James to be fit immediately after the World Cup.

The injured defenders are aiming to be back to face Bournemouth on December 27 when the club resumes its matches in the Premier League.

Chilwell will avoid surgery after his hamstring tear and is confident about his recovery despite not being given a timeline to return by Chelsea’s medical staff.

After this weekend, Chelsea’s unselected World Cup stars will initially get time to go on holiday. There will then be a warm-weather training camp in Abu Dhabi and a possible friendly match for those not at the World Cup.

It will include the returning injured players and those who haven’t made the cut, including Pierre Emerick Aubameyang, Jorginho, Trevoh Chalobah, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Armando Broja alongside a host of youth talent such as Lewis Hall and Omari Hutchinson.

Kepa’s status is unclear after making Spain’s provisional squad but is managing a plantar fasciitis injury in his foot. N’Golo Kante needs more than three more months to recover after surgery on his hamstring.