Reece James gives Chelsea injury update as Mauricio Pochettino gets major Newcastle boost
Reece James will be hoping to lead Chelsea to victory against Newcastle United in Tyneside on Saturday afternoon
Reece James has issued a promising injury update ahead of Chelsea’s clash against Newcastle United this weekend. Eddie Howe will welcome the Blues to St. James’ Park on Saturday afternoon as either side look to climb the Premier League table after the international break.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side head into the tie off the back of a blockbuster draw with Manchester City at Stamford Bridge. The west Londoners almost snatched three-points from the reigning Premier League champions, but it wasn’t meant to be.
Chelsea have lost just one of their last five games in the English top-flight so they’ll be determined to continue their rich vein of form. As for the Magpies, they’re winless their last two games across all competitions, suffering disappointing defeats to Bournemouth in the Premier League and Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League.
While numerous players left Cobham training ground over the international break to represent their country, some big names remained at the Blues’ base in Surrey. The likes of Christopher Nkunku, Romeo Lavia, Levi Colwill and Reece James have been put through their paces by Pochettino.
While Nkunku and Lavia aren’t necessarily expected to feature against Newcastle, James is in contention. The Chelsea captain opted against joining the England squad this month in order to focus on his fitness having recently returned from injury.
James missed a large chunk of the start of the Premier League campaign after suffering a hamstring problem, but the 23-year-old defender has since been given the all clear. In fact, he has issued an update on his recovery on his Instagram story.
“Good start to the week,” James wrote, captioning an image of himself training under the lights at Cobham. The England international will be hoping to get more minutes under his belt and return to his best in the coming weeks.
Elsewhere in the Chelsea treatment room, Nkunku is still yet to make his competitive debut for the Blues following a major blow to his knee during a pre-season friendly against Borussia Dortmund. The 26-year-old forward, who was expected to be out until as late as the New Year, could be set for an incredible return ahead of schedule.
Before the international break, Pochettino revealed that Nkunku is targeting an ambitious return against Howe’s side. The 51-year-old said: “We had some conversation and he said to me, ‘coach, I want to be ready for after the international break, Newcastle’.
“I asked him yesterday and he said ‘hmmm’, and I said ‘you are liar’. ‘No, no I am ready’. It is close and he is doing really well. We are so happy with him, the way he is recovering, he is very professional.”