“He is fully fit” – Mauricio Pochettino tells fans not to worry about defender – but he can’t go on forever

Chelsea’s season is coming down to these final games, but there’s still no need to take unnecessary risks.

It feels like injuries have ruined three consecutive seasons in a row, and the last thing we want to see is any lack of caution. Players have been rushed back on a few occasions this season, and it never ends well. We need results – but they’re not worth injuring players for.

So there was a little bead of sweat upon our brown to see Malo Gusto in the team tonight. The defender went off at the weekend with what hamstring injury, and for a moment we feared we’d seen the last of him this season. But Mauricio Pochettino put our minds at risk:

“Malo Gusto was in doubt, but in the last few days he has improved a lot and now he is fully fit. It’s good to have the same starting XI and repeat it to give confidence and trust in them.”

This confirms what we heard from various sources in the last week – that the problem against Burnley was just a cramp rather than a muscle pull or strain. That makes us a lot more relaxed. His minutes still need to be managed very carefully however. With Reece James effectively out until the end of the season, Gusto is our go to man for the remaining games. That’s a lot of minutes in a short space of time still to play – can he start again this Sunday, for example? He’ll need a break eventually, but we need him tonight, so we’re glad he’s in the starting team.

We expect Alfie Gilchrist is ready and waiting on the bench, hoping to see us go a couple of goals up so he can come on and try to help seeing out the game while Gusto rests.

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