Enzo Fernandez injury: Progress & potential return for Chelsea midfielder

Having booked their place in the Carabao Cup semi-final after a penalty shootout victory over Newcastle United, Stamford Bridge was a rare picture of joy last Tuesday evening.

It’s been a testing season for Chelsea supporters, Mauricio Pochettino’s players having often left the west London faithful underwhelmed. While it was a night to celebrate for the Blues, there were still concerns after the match.

Enzo Fernandez was withdrawn from the action in the first half against the Magpies, the influential midfielder looking visibly upset as the players applauded the fans at the end of the game.

The teary-eyed Argentine added his name to an extensive injury list at Stamford Bridge midweek, with the Blues running thin in midfield and defence.

Enzo Fernandez, Bruno GuimaraesEnzo Fernandez, Bruno Guimaraes

Enzo Fernandez lasted just 32 minutes on Tuesday / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Replaced by Armando Broja after just 32 minutes on Tuesday, Chelsea fans were left fearing the worst as Fernandez trudged off the pitch against Newcastle. While initially attributing his early withdrawal to illness, Pochettino has since clarified the situation regarding the 22-year-old’s health.

It turns out that Fernandez is currently suffering with a hernia, something that is guaranteed to keep him out of action for Chelsea’s clash with Wolverhampton Wanderers on Christmas Eve.

Speaking about the World Cup winner, Pochettino said: “Enzo is going to be out of the game against Wolverhampton. We are going to see if he can be involved again as soon as possible.

“You already have the information that it was a hernia and he also didn’t feel well. We are going to give treatment with the doctor. For me, it is not going to be a problem I think he is going to be as soon as possible again with the group.”

Fernandez has since posted on social media suggesting that he may return to action soon, but there is no official timeframe on the midfielder’s recovery. With games coming thick and fast during the winter period, Pochettino will want him back as quickly as possible.

Reece JamesReece James

Reece James is one of Chelsea’s many absentees / Chelsea Football Club/GettyImages

Fernandez has added his name to a lengthy list of injured personnel, including several midfielders currently unavailable to Pochettino. One of those is £58m summer signing Romeo Lavia, although Pochettino has suggested he’s nearing a return to action having not yet made an appearance for the Blues.

Talking about Lavia, the Chelsea boss said: “You guys are pushing with the players who are not playing. Lavia is in a similar position to [Christopher] Nkunku, you know? He arrived and never can make his debut.

“After nearly six months, maybe he will be involved with the team. He is doing well but he still needs time to get his best form. He’s desperate to make his debut and he’s pushing. But I want to make clear, with the players with a big period off, you know, out of the competition, they are desperate to be involved.”

Young Lesley Ugochukwu is also an injury doubt heading to Wolves, while Carney Chukwuemeka is absent with a knee injury.

However, the main area of the pitch in which Pochettino is struggling is defence. Goalkeeper Robert Sanchez is still injured, while Ben Chilwell, Reece James, Marc Cucurella, Trevoh Chalobah and Wesley Fofana are also sidelined.


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