Frank Lampard has provided a positive update on the fitness of Thiago Silva and Kepa Arrizabalaga but says many members of Chelsea’s squad are suffering with tiredness from a gruelling run of games ahead of their Premier League clash with Burnley.
Both Silva and Kepa stayed at home as the Blues bagged their first three points of the Champions League campaign with a comprehensive 4-0 victory away to Group E rivals Krasnodar on Wednesday night.
Summer signing Silva impressed in Chelsea’s goalless draw with Manchester United last weekend but Lampard decided to rest the 36-year-old centre-back and Antonio Rudiger made his first appearance of the season alongside Kurt Zouma in Russia.
Kepa, meanwhile, has been struggling with a shoulder issue and has been absent from Chelsea’s last two matchday squads but the goalkeeper appears to be making significant strides with his recovery.
‘Thiago is fit. Taking him out of the trip to Russia was more of a matinance issue for him,’ Lampard said when asked about Chelsea’s injury concerns at his pre-match press conference on Thursday.
‘Kepa is outside as I speak. He’s got some progression in his shoulder injury so we’re hopeful but we’ll see with that one.
‘In terms of the rest of the squad, we don’t have any clear injuries but we do have a bit of a tired group.
‘We arrived back late in the early hours of the morning so I’ll have to assess everybody today and tomorrow to see how they’ve settled down over the next 24 hours and then we’ll see where we’re at.’
Lampard urged his players that they will have to get used to rotation over the coming weeks, with games coming thick and fast both domestically and in Europe.
‘All managers, particularly those competing in European football at the moment, are finding this a really heavy schedule of games so we do need options in attacking areas,’ Lampard added.
‘We’re also searching for relationships because some of the newer players are learning about each other and how we want to play.
‘So I’ve got no problem with the options at the minute and the players have to understand that when you play every three days consistently up until Christmas and beyond, then there will be some rotations at times and we need everybody.’
Sean Dyche’s men are yet to record a single win in the top flight this term and suffered defeat at home to Tottenham on Monday night, with Son Heung-min finding a late winner for the visitors.