Graham Potter explains why Edouard Mendy will not play against Salzburg in first game in charge of Chelsea

Graham Potter rules out Chelsea big star in UCL clash opening training this morning ahead of the Champions League group-stage clash against Red Bull Salzburg – which will be the first game of the Graham Potter era. 

Edouard Mendy has been struggling with a knee injury over the past ten days
Edouard Mendy has been struggling with a knee injury over the past ten days
Graham Potter has been dealt an early injury blow at Chelsea, with Edouard Mendy expected to miss tomorrow evening’s Champions League group-stage clash against Red Bull Salzburg due to injury.

The Senegal international was only among the substitutes last week for the 1-0 defeat to Dinamo Zagreb. The reasons for that were two-fold, with Thomas Tuchel – then still in charge at Stamford Bridge – stating Mendy was being given a breather from the starting XI as the goalkeeper was nursing a patella tendon injury.

football.london understands Mendy was struggling to be fit for the Premier League clash against Fulham at Craven Cottage on Saturday. However, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II, the Premier League decided the weekend fixture schedule should not be played as a mark of respect.

Mendy has been undergoing treatment during the opening days of Potter’s reign. And the 30-year-old wasn’t part of the first-team squad that trained this morning at Cobham ahead of the visit of Salzburg to Stamford Bridge tomorrow evening. It’s anticipated he will not be able to feature.

Also, absent from the session was N’Golo Kante. The Frenchman hasn’t featured since the 2-2 draw with Tottenham Hotspur last month after sustaining a hamstring injury and isn’t expected to return to fitness after the international break, which takes place after this weekend.

Potter was appointed Chelsea head coach last Thursday and has been able to spend several days working with the first-team squad at Cobham following the cancellation of the Fulham fixture. The visit of Salzburg will be his first match in charge, and he will undertake his first pre-match press conference this afternoon ahead of the clash at Stamford Bridge.

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