Chelsea captain John Terry has been ruled out of his side’s encounter with Hull City this weekend with the same troublesome ankle injury.
The 35-year-old has missed the last two Premier League games, and it’s arguably more than a coincidence that Chelsea have struggled in his absence having suffered defeats to both Liverpool and Arsenal.
As seen in the tweet below from ESPN’s Liam Twomey, who attended Antonio Conte’s pre-match press conference, Terry is out against Hull as he failed a fitness test ahead of the weekend.
Conte says Terry isn’t available to face Hull: “I think we can see him after the international break” #cfc
— Liam Twomey (@liam_twomey) September 30, 2016
The former England international suffered the setback in the draw with Swansea City on September 11, and his absence from the starting line-up was evident when Liverpool claimed a 2-1 win at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea conceded two more goals in the EFL Cup win over Leicester City, before falling apart in the first half at Arsenal as they went on to lose 3-0 at the Emirates Stadium.
Terry’s leadership, communication and defensive skills are evidently still crucial to the team, and his absence against Hull will be a huge blow for Conte who will be desperate to bounce back from such disappointing results.
It’s perhaps a concern for Chelsea fans that they still rely so heavily on Terry given his age, and so the answers will have to come from somewhere sooner rather than later.
Nevertheless, that won’t help them this weekend as Conte will look to prepare his side as well as possible, with a view of getting back to winning ways in the league and improving on their current position in the table in eighth with 10 points from their opening six games.