Thiago Silva ruled out for six weeks after knee injury in blow for under-fire Graham Potter

The Brazilian defender’s absence will pose yet more problems for the Chelsea manager

Harry Latham-Coyle
Friday 03 March 2023 14:02 GMT
Moment: Arteta empathises with under-pressure Potter

Chelsea defender Thiago Silva is likely to miss the next six weeks of action in another major blow to Graham Potter and Chelsea.

The under-fire Chelsea manager finds himself in need of an on-field turnaround, but will now be without a key defensive leader for a busy period of the season.

Silva limped off during the club’s defeat against Tottenham Hotspur last weekend and is now set for an extended period on the sidelines after suffering a knee ligament injury.

Potter confirmed ahead of Chelsea’s fixture to Leeds on Saturday that the defender will miss around six weeks.

Mason Mount, meanwhile, will also miss the encounter at Stamford Bridge with what Potter described as a “problem with his lower abdomen”, and Reece James is a doubt with a hamstring injury.

In better news for Potter, N’Golo Kante has is back in full training and is nearing a playing return.

Successive defeats have continued a tough run for the former Brighton manager, who took over at the London club in September.

Chelsea sit tenth in the Premier League, 14 points behind Spurs in fourth.

Potter said on Friday that he felt fans’ fears for the rest of the season were “understandable”.

“Supporters care and how that comes out is understandable,” the 47-year-old explained. “They’re hurting and we are too.

“We thank them for their support – and when you lose at home to the team that are bottom you expect a negative response. We’ve not given them enough to give them a reason to be excited about the team.

“We all admit that we can do better. We are all fighting but we need to show it on the pitch and that needs to manifest in three points.”

Potter confirmed that he had again spoken to the club’s owners, who continue to back the Englishman despite Chelsea’s struggles.

There is support and I’ve spoken to them,” Potter said. “But I’m not going to hide behind that. The results haven’t been good enough.”

After hosting Leeds, Chelsea welcome Borussia Dortmund to Stamford Brige on Tuesday in the second leg of their Champions League last-16 tie.

Dortmund lead 1-0 after the first leg in Germany.

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