” Ruben Loftus-Cheek suffered an injury blow in Chelsea’s post-season friendly in America and is now unlikely to play in the Europa League final. The midfielder picked up an ankle injury during the Blues’ 3-0 win over New England Revolution at Gillette Stadium.
Getty 5 Ruben Loftus-Cheek has scored 10 goals in all competitions for Chelsea this season Ross Barkley scored twice either side of Olivier Giroud’s header in the victory in Foxborough. Prior to the game, manager Maurizio Sarri expressed his concerns about travelling to the US so close to a major European final. Chelsea play Arsenal in the final in Baku on Wednesday, May 29.
Getty 5 Ruben Loftus-Cheek scored in the Europa League semi-final against Eintracht Frankfurt He did name a strong starting line-up for the match with the likes of Eden Hazard, David Luiz and Pedro all starting. Loftus-Cheek was seen leaving the stadium in a protective boot and he is facing a year on the sidelines if the injury is as bad as feared.
The 23-year-old has played a key role in the Blues’ Europa League success this season and scored in the second leg of the semi-final against Eintracht Frankfurt. LIVE ON talkSPORT talkSPORT is your home of live football! Here’s what’s coming up on talkSPORT and talkSPORT 2…
Portsmouth vs Sunderland (Thursday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT 2 Charlton vs Doncaster (Friday, 7:45pm) – talkSPORT 2 Manchester City vs Watford (Saturday, 5pm) – talkSPORT He has also been directly involved in nine goals in his past 15 competitive matches for the club.http://1xbet.footballresultstoday.org/ His absence will be a big blow for Sarri in his preparations for the final, which is less than a fortnight away.
The manager is likely to be able to cope without starting Loftus-Cheek as he has only made six starts in the Premier League this season. The England international has been a key impact player from the bench, though, and has netted six times in the league. Getty 5 N’Golo Kante is expected to be fit for the final Another player Chelsea will be awaiting news on their fitness is midfielder N’Golo Kante.
The France international limped out of their final home game against Watford with a hamstring injury and missed the last two games. Kante is expected to be fit for the final against Arsenal and he remained in London to receive treatment while his team-mates went to America for the friendly. Here is how Chelsea could line-up without Ruben Loftus-Cheek in the Europa League.
Build My Lineup 5 How Chelsea could line-up for the Europa League final There are unlikely to be any surprises for Maurizio Sarri’s side when they face Arsenal due to injury problems at certain positions and poor form elsewhere. Centre-back pairing David Luiz and Andreas Christensen are his strongest with the injury to Antonio Rudiger keeping him out.
Getty 5 Hazard appears to have just one more game to play for Chelsea before he leaves the club If Kante is fit then his is likely to play alongside Jorginho and Kovacic in midfield. Ruben Loftus-Cheek may have been pushing to replace one of those in the line-up had he not gone down with the injury but it will have made the decision for Sarri. Ross Barkley scored twice in the charity friendly but he will likely be used from the bench.
LATEST FOOTBALL NEWS gossip Man United news live: Dutch ace wanted as new right-back, West Ham star on radar gossip Liverpool news live: Salah ‘rejects ?150million exit’, Ajax set Ziyech price latest Man United target Dutch defender, Spurs to sell Rose and sign Sessegnon review Women’s World Cup: Netherlands breeze past Cameroon, Canada beat hapless New Zealand gesture Amazing reason Marta pointed to her boots after scoring opener for Brazil royal return AC Milan appoint club legends Boban and Maldini in new roles at the club ‘i was fed up’ The reason why Chelsea midfielder Jorginho nearly quit football latest Arsenal transfer news live: Top target ‘not for sale’, Ziyech to cost just ?30m It may also be the last we see of Eden Hazard in a Chelsea shirt with his move to Real Madrid is thought to be close.https://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazionale_di_calcio_dell’Irlanda Olivier Giroud is favourite at this stage to start up front against his former club with loanee Gonzalo Higuain struggling for goals since joining in January. ” ” Naomi Osaka beat Petra Kvitova 7-6 (7-2) 5-7 6-4 to be crowned Australian Open champion and become the new world number one.
The 21-year-old from Japan, the first Asian person to top the singles rankings, built on her maiden title at the US Open and made it back-to-back slam successes. 4 Naomi Osaka celebrates winning the Australian Open final. Judging by what will surely be the first two of many slam finals, Osaka does not do routine.
But, while her victory over Serena Williams in New York was all about controversy and meltdowns, this time the drama was all on the scoreboard. At a set and 5-3 with Kvitova facing three match points, Osaka looked poised to stroll over the finish line only to lose four games in a row and the second set. She had lost her head, too, but one of the most impressive things about her this fortnight has been the way she has overcome every mental hurdle placed in front of her and so it proved again.
Kvitova, who would also have become number one with victory, was playing in her first grand slam final since winning her second Wimbledon title in 2014 and only two years after the knife attack at her home that put her career in the balance. MOST READ IN SPORT fight night Tyson Fury vs Tom Schwarz: Brit wins by TKO in the second round CONTROVERSY Breidis wins crazy, chaotic brawl in Latvia as he elbows opponent before KO DISPUTE Billy Joe Saunders reacts angrily as Josh Warrington beats Kid Galahad on points AMERICAN DREAM Tyson Fury enjoys spectacular US-themed ring walk before fight ‘JOKE’ Whyte says Fury ‘should be ashamed’ after knocking out Schwarz in two rounds STATEMENT Tyson Fury scores vicious second-round TKO of Schwarz, promises Wilder rematch RESPONSE ‘I will knock your cousin out’ – Dubois hits back at Fury after latest comments HOMECOMING Andy Ruiz Jr names venue he wants for Anthony Joshua rematch DANGEROUS Fury warned to take Schwarz seriously or risk AJ repeat ICED Cuban ‘KO Doctor’ renders opponent unconscious with one huge shot to reach WBSS final The Czech had won her last eight finals and more than played her part in a generally high-quality encounter but in the end had no answer.
Osaka and Kvitova are two of the biggest hitters on the women’s tour and long rallies were scarce as both looked to unleash at the first opportunity. Osaka came under pressure at 2-2 and 3-3 but saved a combined five break points, while also seeing a break point on the Kvitova serve well saved by the Czech. 4 Petra Kvitova gave Osaka a scare during the final.
Somewhat strangely, the pair had never faced each other before, and Osaka’s lack of experience against top-class left-handers was one of the match-up’s unknown factors. Osaka struggled to read Kvitova’s serve initially but picked up the pace in the 12th game, forcing two set points. She could not take either, though, Kvitova producing a tremendously gutsy forehand to save the first and then a big serve on the second.
However, the Czech was simply outplayed in the tie-break, Osaka powering a return onto the line for a winner on the second point and not looking back. Given Osaka had won her last 59 matches when taking the first set, the size of Kvitova’s task was clear, but the 28-year-old responded well and secured the first break of the match on her seventh chance. 4 Osaka had a wobble mid-match but recovered to claim the triumph.
However, a missed opportunity to make it 3-0 looked very costly as Osaka won five of the next six games. When she won the next three points to bring up three match points, it appeared the trophy was hers. But Karolina Pliskova’s win over Serena Williams from 1-5 and match points down showed that a tennis match is never over until the final ball is hit, and this time it was her fellow Czech mounting the unlikely comeback.
4 Osaka is the first Asian person to top the singles rankings in tennis. Osaka was struggling to hold back tears as she left the court for a bathroom break but not for no reason has she now won 60 straight matches when claiming the first set. Ending Kvitova’s run of five straight games was crucial and, when Osaka powered a backhand full of anger and frustration past Kvitova to break for 2-1, the power had shifted once more. Stepping up to serve for the match for a second time, Osaka’s demons were nowhere to be seen and she clinched her fifth match point to ascend to the throne as the new queen of tennis. “