Chelsea's Loftus-Cheek a Doubt for Europa League Final
Just a few days ago we saw Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri criticising the decision for his team to play a friendly game this week, ahead of the Europa League final when he wanted his team to be resting. His worst fears were realised last night, when midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek was taken off during that game with an injury, and he is now a doubt for the final after being seen in some pain afterwards.
The game was a charity friendly against New England in the USA, so on top of playing the game, Chelsea also had to deal with the travel there and back from the match. They did raise $4 million, but there is no doubt that this was badly planned, and it should have been played in the summer when the players were beginning their pre-season training.
Tests will be completed on Loftus-Cheek in the coming days to see whether he can play or not in the final. The midfielder scored a goal in the second leg of their semin final against Frankfurt, and he has contributed well going forward this season. He has been involved in nine goals during his last 15 appearances for the club, showing that he has the ability to determine which way a game goes, and should he not play then he would be a big loss.
The Europa League final is just two weeks away, and despite the possibility of missing Loftus-Cheek, Chelsea are still favourites to win the game. They are 5/4 to win the game in 90 minutes, while opponents Arsenal are priced up at 11/5. A 90 minute draw and extra time and possibly penalties can be backed at 9/4 for those that think this one will go all the way.