Chelsea handed massive boost as star excluded from AFCON squad
Chelsea edge into the Semi-Finals
In a game short of quality, a Pontus Jansson own goal and a Jorginho penalty gave a much-changed Chelsea a route to the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup, where they will face former boss Antonio Conte, and Tottenham.
Oh what fun it is to see Chelsea win away. 😉 🎶#BreChe pic.twitter.com/oG0ziHwJz2
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) December 22, 2021
Those two legs mean that the Blues have a congested fixture list ahead of them, with the Club World Cup due to take place at the beginning of February, and either seven or eight games in January, depending on if they win their 3rd round FA Cup tie against Chesterfield.
And, safe to say, they have been hard hit by injuries and illnesses in recent weeks, with seven players having tested positive for Covid-19 and several more on the treatment table through various injuries, seeing them fall six points off the pace in the Premier League.
However, there is good news for Blues fans and Thomas Tuchel with the latest announcement.
Chelsea star not included in AFCON squad
Now, Chelsea have been handed a boost on the personnel front as one key man will not be joining up with his compatriots for the Africa Cup of Nations.
Morocco named their squad for the competition on Thursday morning, and Chelsea’s Hakim Ziyech, who has featured 18 times for Thomas Tuchel this season, was not selected to travel to Cameroon and represent his national side.
🔥 Introducing your #AltasLions for the TotalEnergies Africa Cup of Nations, Cameroon 2021! Ready to get going! 👊#DimaMaghrib 🇲🇦 #AtlasLions #Morocco #AFCON2021 #Cameroon pic.twitter.com/l64H0DpcAm
— Équipe du Maroc (@EnMaroc) December 23, 2021
This means that, barring injury, he will be available for selection for the congested fixture list in January, and will be able to travel to the club world cup, something that he wouldn’t have been able to do had he taken part in AFCON.
It is good festive news for the Blues.