Chelsea midfielder Denis Zakaria to miss four weeks through injury, Graham Potter confirms

Sidelined: Denis Zakaria is to miss four more weeks of action for Chelsea (Getty Images)
Sidelined: Denis Zakaria is to miss four more weeks of action for Chelsea (Getty Images)

Chelsea will be without Denis Zakaria for a further four weeks due to injury, Graham Potter has confirmed.

The Juventus loanee limped out of Thursday’s 2-1 west London derby defeat by Fulham early in the second half and was sidelined for another all-capital clash against Crystal Palace on Sunday.

Blues boss Potter had already confirmed that Zakaria was battling a quad issue and Chelsea were waiting to discover the extent of the problem.

And after a vital 1-0 win over Palace at Stamford Bridge secured by Kai Havertz’s second-half header in front of a watching Mykhaylo Mudryk and after emotional tributes paid to the late Gianluca Vialli, the manager confirmed that he would be out for around a month.

That means Zakaria stands to miss further Premier League matches against Liverpool, West Ham and Fulham, while he will also be considered a major doubt for the first leg of Chelsea’s Champions League last-16 tie away at Borussia Dortmund on February 15 and likely the visit of lowly Southampton three days later.

With the timeframe laid out by Potter, the top-flight clash with rivals Tottenham on February 26 could well be earmarked for Zakaria’s potential return.

The Swiss international had to wait months for his Chelsea debut after signing on deadline day in the summer, unfancied by former boss Thomas Tuchel and initially by predecessor Potter.

However, he has quickly grown in influence with a number of impressive displays either side of the World Cup break and his absence will be keenly felt.

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Chelsea did welcome back Ruben Loftus-Cheek into their matchday squad against Palace with Conor Gallagher, Jorginho and young Carney Chukwuemeka lining up in a completely changed midfield.

However, N’Golo Kante remains on the sidelines amid an ongoing injury crisis, as do Edouard Mendy, Ben Chilwell, Wesley Fofana, Reece James, Christian Pulisic, Raheem Sterling and Armando Broja. New signing Joao Felix is suspended for two more matches meanwhile after his red card received on debut at Fulham.