Kante facing three weeks out at Chelsea as no return date is set for Pulisic

N'Golo Kante Chelsea 2019
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Blues boss Frank Lampard has revealed that he remains without a number of similar stars, but Tammy Abraham and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are available

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard is expecting to be without N’Golo Kante for three weeks, while no timescale is being put on Christian Pulisic’s recovery from injury.

The Blues saw the World Cup-winning midfielder forced off early on during their 2-0 defeat to Manchester United.

Kante lasted just 12 minutes in that contest before heading down the tunnel.

Lampard admits that the France international is set to remain on the sidelines for the foreseeable future.

United States international Pulisic is also nursing an adductor problem, with it yet to be determined when he will come back into contention.

Chelsea are, however, able to call upon Ruben Loftus-Cheek for the first time this season, as they piece together plans for a London derby date with Tottenham on Saturday, while Andreas Christensen is available after being fitted for a face mask to protect his broken nose.

Leading goalscorer Tammy Abraham is also back in contention after being missing since the 2-2 draw with Leicester on February 1.

Lampard told reporters when offering his latest fitness update: “N’Golo is not fit, muscle injury. Similar to Arsenal. Hopefully three weeks.

“Pulisic not fit, no exact date. A difficult injury.

“Ruben is in the squad. Not fit to start, but in the squad.

“Andreas went to get a mask and has trained with it. Available for selection.

“Tammy has trained the last two days. Probably 70%. He is in the squad.”

Frank Lampard Chelsea 2019-20

Injury issues have been a problem for Chelsea throughout the 2019-20 campaign, with Lampard eager to point out that he has had to shuffle his pack on a regular basis.

He added: “This season is a transitional year, and fans appreciate that.

“Not many teams have had our injuries. Kante has played 50% of the games. The fans respect that and they see what we try to do. They will be there to support us.

“It is tight at the moment and we need the fans behind us. The players will give everything.”

Little was expected of Lampard when he returned to Stamford Bridge in a managerial capacity last summer, but he is aware of the need to deliver Champions League qualification.

Quizzed on whether he feels under pressure, the Blues legend said: “I always feel it, because this is top sport. I thrive on it.

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“I have enjoyed this week. It was disappointing to lose on Monday [against United], but this is the challenge for us.

“Everyone probably wrote us off for top four. It is a process and the pressure is always there.”

Chelsea sit fourth in the Premier League table at present but are only one point clear of Spurs, two ahead of Sheffield United and three in front of Manchester United.

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