Levi Colwill was set to start last night for Chelsea at left back once again, spelling the not quite match-fit Ben Chilwell at a not quite best-fit position — just as he had been for much of Chilly’s nearly four-month absence.
But Colwill emerged for warm-ups with a wrap on his leg, and things did not get better for him from there. Twenty minutes before kick-off, he had to be scratched from the lineup, with fellow Academy grad Alfie Gilchrist drafted in — and Benoit Badiashile having to slide over to nominal left back (but not much of a left back at all in practice, with both Badie and Alfie playing quite conservatively).
Mauricio Pochettino did not reveal what exactly was Colwill’s issue, but he did confirm that the defender’s status was already questionable before they decided to give it a go. Despite that, the head coach is hoping that the issue is minor enough that Colwill would not miss any time.
So three months out then?
“We don’t believe it’s so bad. A small issue where he didn’t feel comfortable. We knew before we maybe don’t start with him, but then he was ready to play. Then he felt something but it’s not a big issue. I hope he can train tomorrow.”
-Mauricio Pochettino; source: Football.London
We do have some depth (and health) at center back, and if Chilwell can start on Wednesday at Anfield, we can deal with Colwill’s absence — just his second of the season after a brief shoulder problem in November — however brief, or not brief, it might be.