Graham Potter is not going to hurry N’Golo Kante again into motion at Chelsea as he continues his restoration from the hamstring harm that has saved him out since August.
The midfielder is just not in rivalry to be concerned when the Blues face Borussia Dortmund of their Champions League last-16 second leg on Tuesday, although the supervisor confirmed he has taken half in two full coaching classes with the primary workforce.
Kante has been unavailable to Potter since his appointment in September, and had surgical procedure in October on the harm he sustained throughout Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Tottenham seven months in the past.
The workforce’s type has suffered badly within the absence of their most influential midfielder, with Saturday’s 1-0 win towards Leeds solely the third they’ve recorded of their final 15.
Ahead of the go to of Dortmund, which might but play an element in defining what has been a tough season for Chelsea, Potter described how Kante’s progress and imminent return have lifted the remainder of the squad.
“N’Golo is a complex one,” he stated. “He’s been a long time out. There’s back in full training, but then it’s ‘how do you get him back to speed to play Champions League or Premier League football?’.
“He needs time with the group, a bit of time in full training, then we need time to build his minutes up.
“He won’t be able to play 90 minutes any time soon but the fact he’s training, and with us and getting closer is exciting for everybody.”
Chelsea path 1-0 from the primary leg in Dortmund three weeks in the past, and wish a win and progress to the quarter-finals to maintain open what seems to be prone to be their solely achievable route again into subsequent season’s competitors.
They are 11 factors again within the race for the Premier League’s high 4, however impressed throughout the defeat on the Signal Iduna Stadium, creating a bunch of probabilities as they largely dominated the Bundesliga’s second-place aspect.
Edin Terzic’s workforce have gained 10 in a row in all competitions and path champions and leaders Bayern Munich solely on purpose distinction of their bid to win a primary league title since 2012.
“In terms of what we learned from the previous game, we’re meeting a top opponent,” stated Potter. “You can see their results in the Bundesliga. They’re in a fantastic vein of form. Winning games constantly, 10 in a row.
“They’re doing a lot well. Attack, defend, good individuals, well-coached. It’s a good challenge for us, but we’re excited for it and we’re looking forward to it.
“The position we’re in, we should always welcome the pressure. Because it means you’re in a fantastic situation, which is to compete for the last eight of the Champions League. It’ll be a special night. It was a special occasion in Dortmund and I’m sure it will be the same at Stamford Bridge.”
January mortgage signing Joao Felix, who got here closest to scoring for the Blues in Dortmund when he struck the crossbar, stated qualification for subsequent season’s competitors is not going to affect whether or not or not he stays at Stamford Bridge past the summer time. He is presently resulting from return to Atletico Madrid on the finish of the season.
“If I want to stay or not, I think the future no-one knows,” stated Felix. “I’m just focused on the (Dortmund) game. After that, we don’t know what will happen. The club is so big, it’s amazing, everyone behind the club is so good. I’m happy to be here.
“Playing in the Champions League, it’s a competition that everyone wants to play. Now I focus on tomorrow’s game, we have a lot of games yet to try and reach the Champions League through the league. It’s not over.
“I think I needed (the loan). When I left Atletico, I said it was good for me and for them. I think it was the perfect deal, to try something different. I always try to do my best, sometimes it doesn’t work. I had to change to see if things could go differently. It’s important for me, this loan.”