Chelsea take on AFC Bournemouth this evening in a pre-season friendly but Thomas Tuchel is set to rest a host of his stars.
The Blues, who called a premature end to their training camp in Ireland because of a Covid-19 scare, continue their preparations for the upcoming campaign with a trip down to the south coast to face the Cherries tonight.
Nine stars returned to training at the weekend, with some having international responsibilities and they look set to be rested for this evening’s run out against the Championship club.
football.london understands that N’Golo Kante, Antonio Rudiger, Timo Werner, Kai Havertz, Kurt Zouma and Michy Batshuayi are to be rested this evening after returning to training at the weekend after Euro 2020 campaigns with their respective countries.
As well as this, Tiemoue Bakayoko and Kenedy were present at Cobham, but they are also set to miss out tonight.
Tuchel has been working with a makeshift squad for the first two weeks of pre-season, with players who spent last season out on loan being present for the sessions, but his main stars have been resting after busy summers.
The likes of Jorginho, Thiago Silva, Mason Mount, Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Cesar Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen are yet to report back because of their international commitments.
Chelsea boss Tuchel recently spoke to the club’s website about his pre-season preparations and how they have differed this summer because of the international tournaments.
“Yes [there are two different versions of pre-season, one without international competitions and one with], and it gets more and more complicated these days, because there’s almost every year a tournament,” the German coach said.
“Two years ago was a Copa America, this year was a Copa America and Euros, and now in 18 months will come a winter World Cup – again a new challenge and we will try to find solutions while we are doing it.
“So it gets more and more demanding to prepare teams for a whole season because there is a huge link between preparation and not being injured, between preparation and performance, and between input and output; you can put it as easy as that.
“If we don’t allow the players to rest enough and if we don’t allow the players to have enough time for the input for a season, we struggle to see them perform at the highest level, and this is what we want to do, we want to perform for the people who love the game.
“We want to perform on a high level and it’s complicated. This is not a cry for help and not an excuse but it’s reality. And this is not like the optimal.”