Thomas Tuchel Provides Fitness Updates on Pulisic, Kante, Abraham

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Speaking to the media ahead of tomorrrow night’s UEFA Champions League quarterfinal (leg 1/2) against FC Porto, being staged in Seville (a neutral venue due, to coronavirus concerns ) Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel provided fitness updates on three key players.

Tuchel confirmed that Christian Pulisic, N’Golo Kante and Tammy Abraham are all fit enough to make the squad. The troika of players had all previously been doubtful this clash.

Chelsea at FC Porto UCL Quarterfinal Leg 1/2 FYIs

Kickoff: Wed April 7, 8pm, Estadio Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan (Seville- neutral site)

Chelsea Starting XI Prediction: go here

Team News for Both Sides: go here

Odds: Chelsea win -140    Draw +250    FC Porto Win +430

Head to Head:  Chelsea win 5    Draw 2    FC Porto Win 1

Fast Fact: Chelsea have kept a clean sheet in 6 of their last 8 matches (Champions League)

“They are fit enough to be in the squad which is good news,” Tuchel said.

“Christian went out before the accident and right before the injury could happen, so he said it at half time he feels like if he continues it will be an injury coming so we needed to take him off.”

Pulisic opened the scoring in the weekend’s blowout loss to West Brom, but couldn’t go in the second half, as Tuchel said that the American’s hamstring “wouldn’t survive” the match. Opting out as a precautionary move, it proved to be a very smart decision as the 22-year-old avoided another injury setback.

As for Kante, he has already been ruled out for this one, but apparently he made a nice, quick recovery. Abraham was also not expected to make the squad, but he seems to have passed a late fitness test that gives the club a pleasantly surprising boost.

Don’t be surprised though if the triad do not feature or only play sparingly in this match. While the trio is fit enough to make the bench, it is likely they won’t be risked here, or if they do play, on an easy workload.

Tuchel also discussed the training ground bust-up between Antonio Rudiger and Kepa Arrizabalaga, and we covered his comments in an earlier post here.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB Nation. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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