Defensive boost for Chelsea as Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger return

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Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger have bolstered Chelsea’s defensive options ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Malmo.

The centre-back pair missed Saturday’s 1-0 Premier League win at Brentford, but were both back in training on Monday.

Experienced centre-back Silva only returned from Brazil duty on Friday afternoon, leaving the 37-year-old short of preparation time for the Brentford trip.

Germany defender Rudiger picked up a minor back issue on national team duty and was forced to sit out the Blues’ gritty win on the road.

Senegal stopper Edouard Mendy pulled off a string of five saves against the Bees in a pivotal showing that helped push Chelsea back to the top of the league.

And now defender Andreas Christensen has lauded the Blues keeper’s stellar form.

“He showed on Saturday he is one of the top keepers in the world, not just the Premier League,” Christensen told Chelsea’s official club website.

“He is a top goalkeeper. You can see how important he is to us, to the team. Yet again we are lucky we have him.

Edouard Mendy celebrates after victory over Brentford
Edouard Mendy celebrates after victory over Brentford (John Walton/PA)

“People can see and recognise what he can do and the quality he has.

“It is hard when you watch him every day because you don’t see the process.

“We just enjoy having him here. He was always a confident goalkeeper when he came in.

“He is very loud on the pitch and a really nice, confident guy off the pitch. He is trying to just help us every time.”

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