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Chelsea will be without N’Golo Kante for up to three weeks after scans revealed he suffered a ‘grade 2′ tear during the Blues’ recent 2-0 Premier League defeat to Manchester United.
Kante could only manage ten minutes of the first half before being replaced by Mason Mount, with Frank Lampard’s side slumping to a defeat that leaves them just one point ahead of Tottenham in fourth place.
That defeat leaves Lampard’s men with just a solitary point from their last four Premier League games, and failure to secure forward reinforcements during the January transfer window has left Chelsea’s season at risk of ‘ending in tears’.
Speaking after the Stamford Bridge loss, Lampard said on Kante: “It’s an abductor injury. We’ll have to assess it, scan it, but it doesn’t look great.”
According to L’Equipe, those fears have been realised, with the French outlet stating that Kante could be out of action for up to three weeks with a ‘grade 2’ tear of his abductor.
While on the surface it’s not an especially long-term injury, given the run of fixtures coming up for Chelsea and the form they find themselves in, Kante’s spell on the sidelines could have a significant impact on the rest of the season.
Crunch top-flight games against Tottenham and Bournemouth are coming up during that period, while the west London side will try to navigate their way through a Champions League round of 16 clash with Bayern Munich. Lampard’s men also face off against Liverpool in the 5th Round of the FA Cup on March 3.
As it stands, the most likely return date for the French midfielder will be a Premier League clash with Aston Villa on March 14, although there is some hope he could be fit in time to take on Everton six days prior.
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