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Graham Potter explains the late Wesley Fofana substitution against Everton

Cramp? Hamstring? Fatigue?

Chelsea FC v Everton FC - Premier League Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

Things didn’t quite go to plan yesterday evening at Stamford Bridge, with Chelsea dropping two points against relegation-battling Everton, giving up the lead twice in the process. Everton’s second equalizer was especially frustrating, coming in the final minute of regulation and not long after Wesley Fofana was substituted off — perhaps the most questionable at the time of Graham Potter’s questionable substitutions. (You just don’t mess with defensive rhythm if you don’t have to.)

Fofana has been excellent since returning from his long absence due to a knee injury. This was his fourth consecutive start and sixth straight match with an appearance. He had played the full-90 against Leeds United and Borussia Dortmund, though he was also withdrawn a few minutes from the end last weekend against Leicester City after collecting a knock.

And apparently that was the reason for his removal in yesterday’s game as well, as Potter explained afterwards, though the exact nature of the defender’s ailment is not quite clear.

“I’m not sure yet. He was fatiguing at the end. He went down and thought it was cramp; let’s hope it is. We haven’t assessed it yet fully.”

-Graham Potter; source: Football.London

If it was truly just fatigue, that’s a bit weird, but whatever. In another post-match interview Potter seemed to think that it might be a hamstring problem, which is obviously more concerning than just a cramp.

“Wes Fofana had to come off with fatigue, as he has had a long time out. He was feeling his hamstring. Wes was fantastic and defended well.”

-Graham Potter; source: Football.London

We had given up more than 1 goal just once in our preceding ten games, so this was an especially inopportune time to break that trend. Hopefully Fofana doesn’t have to miss any more time.

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