Ben Chilwell’s World Cup fate is set to be determined with the Chelsea full-back set to have a scan on his hamstring injury today. The Blues defender limped off during the closing stages of Chelsea’s Champions League win over Dinamo Zagreb on Wednesday, and was spotted on crutches after the match.
It’s said that Chelsea suspect Chilwell has suffered a grade two hamstring tendon tear, with initial assessments putting his estimated recovery time at between four and 12 weeks. This means not only would he miss the World Cup but he might not be ready for the restart of the Premier League season on Boxing Day.
Early indications suggest that Chilwell has suffered a tear, which would rule him out of Qatar in a cruel blow for the player and the Three Lions. As reported by the Evening Standard, the Chelsea full-back is braced to learn that his World Cup hopes are over with the scan on his injury.
The unfortunate turn of events will open the door to a player on the fringes of England manager Gareth Southgate’s plans. Sportsmail understands that Spurs left back Ryan Sessegnon is among the players hoping to be catapulted into the Southgate’s final 26 man squad on Thursday.
Mount said: ‘We don’t know how bad it is but that was tough to watch. We saw his reaction and that never looks good. As soon as you feel something and to not even think about the ball, it’s tough.
The 22-year-old was named in England’s extended 55 man squad for the World Cup last month. Leicester defender James Justin was also included in Southgate’s long list. On Wednesday night TV cameras picked up Chilwell appearing to tell teammate Mason Mount that he felt his hamstring pop.
‘We know what’s coming up, hopefully it’s not too bad and he can be back as soon as possible because we need him as well.’ The injury is a huge blow for Chelsea, England but also Chilwell personally.
He was part of England’s squad for Euro 2020 but did not play a single minute of their run to the final. Then Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel and Chilwell himself admitted he suffered a hangover following his non-involvement last summer. Chilwell described it as a ‘mental fatigue.’
He was rediscovering his best form last season when he suffered a knee injury against Juventus in November that then kept him out for six months. Chilwell had been expected to challenge Luke Shaw for the left wing-back role in Gareth Southgate’s starting XI at the World Cup, but the England boss could now turn to Sessegnon.
James picked up a knee issue playing for Chelsea against AC Milan in the Champions League, and is not expected to be available until the latter stages of the World Cup at the earliest.
The Three Lions already have a number of players with fitness issues ahead of the tournament, with Kyle Walker, Reece James and Kalvin Phillips all currently sidelined. Walker underwent surgery on a groin problem last month, and is in a race against time to prove his fitness to Southgate.
Meanwhile, Phillips has been out of action since September due to an ongoing shoulder complaint, but has returned to training and Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola is optimistic that he will be return in time to be considered for selection