Carney Chukwuemeka has been barely involved all season — just one start in all competitions and only three substitute appearances in our last 19 games — but apparently he’s been deemed important enough to hold back for our final three, essentially meaningless games of the season after a couple injuries to fellow midfielders.
The 19-year-old will reportedly “delay” his participation in the U20 World Cup after “a decision has been made” to keep him with Chelsea for the rest of the club season. Chukwuemeka will thus miss the group stages of the competition but I guess would then join up with the squad in Argentina for the knockout rounds, assuming they get there without him.
Chukwuemeka is not the only player in this situation for this sub-optimally scheduled World Cup, with Chelsea teammate Lewis Hall already held back (he got the start over the weekend) and the likes of Rico Lewis staying with Manchester City, but it’s a bit of a strange decision after we let him join up in the first place. Surely we have enough cover even with N’Golo Kanté and Mateo Kovačić injured — say, Enzo Fernández, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Conor Gallagher, plus plenty of kids in the Academy.
Hopefully Chukwuemeka does get plenty of minutes in our final three games then!