Chelsea could have Edouard Mendy, Christian Pulisic and N’Golo Kante all available to them for this weekend’s Premier League clash with Crystal Palace.
Graham Potter will finally take charge of his first top-flight game as Chelsea boss when domestic football returns this weekend, with a London derby at Selhurst Park first up for the new manager.
Games against Fulham and Liverpool were both postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II earlier this month, meaning that the Blues have not been in league action since September 3.
Despite such a lengthy break, Potter still had injury concerns to contend with, although his options are set to be boosted by the returns of three players.
First-choice goalkeeper Mendy had missed the Champions League meetings with Dinamo Zagreb and Red Bull Salzburg due to a knee injury, which coincided with increased scrutiny over his early-season form.
Backup shot-stopper Kepa Arrizabalaga filled in for those two games, the latter of which was Potter’s first game in charge, but Mendy has returned to training during the international break and could now be ready for a recall.
Pulisic, meanwhile, picked up a knock during training with the United States which forced him to miss last Friday’s friendly defeat to Japan, but recovered in time to start his country’s 0-0 draw with Saudi Arabia on Tuesday.
Midfielder Kante is also back in full training at Cobham as he continues his recovery from a hamstring injury that has kept him sidelined for over a month.
The 31-year-old has not featured since the draw with Tottenham Hotspur on August 14, missing six games in total as well as France’s UEFA Nations League double-header during the international break.
However, the World Cup winner could now be available to make his return against Palace, leaving Potter with a full complement of players at his disposal.
The former Brighton & Hove Albion boss inherits a Chelsea side sitting seventh in the Premier League table, already eight points adrift of early leaders Arsenal, albeit with a game in hand over their London rivals.