Chelsea’s players have been back in pre-season training for a week and kicked off their schedule of friendlies on Saturday with a game against Peterborough United behind closed doors at Cobham.
The Blues ran out 6-1 winners as Hakim Ziyech helped himself to a second half hat trick having been introduced at the break. Head coach Thomas Tuchel used 22 players in total, with two different outfield XI’s taking to the pitch for each half.
Only goalkeeper Jamie Cumming played more than 45 minutes, getting an hour under his belt before he was replaced by Lucas Bergstrom midway through the second half as senior keepers Edouard Mendy and Kepa Arrizabalaga were given the afternoon off.
On a baking hot late morning at Cobham, the match kicked off at 11am which was probably a wise move considering the searing afternoon heat, head coach Thomas Tuchel will have been pleased to have had the chance to run the rule over his players who have returned from loan spells and the impressive crop of youngsters he has on the books at Chelsea.
Up next for the squad is a week-long training camp in Ireland just outside Dublin, with the players and staff jetting off for the short hop across the Irish Sea on Tuesday. They are expected to play another friendly on the Emerald Isle before returning to the capital.
After that, they travel to Bournemouth for a friendly on July 27 with a 7.45pm kick off before pre-season wraps up with The Mind Series triangular tournament with Arsenal and Spurs ahead of the Premier League kick off for the Blues on August 14.
Many of Chelsea’s senior stars will not be heading to Ireland as they continue their holidays following the exertions of the summer in the Euro 2020 championships and, in the case of Thiago Silva, the Copa America tournament.
Mason Mount is having a holiday in Mykonos with his England teammates after their heartbreaking loss to Italy in the final at Wembley a week ago.
Therefore, the group that is set to head to Ireland will likely be the same 27 players that have been back at pre-season training for the past few days.
One player that won’t be making the trip is Marc Guehi, who is to join Crystal Palace imminently on a five-year deal for a fee football.london understands is worth up to £20million.
Guehi was a part of the initial group of players training before Palace came calling. The Blues were willing to loan the centre back out again but the player was reportedly wary of being embroiled in a cycle of loan deals and has decided to move on permanently.
He will be the third player to leave the club this summer after Fikayo Tomori and Olivier Giroud both joined AC Milan.
Chelsea likely Ireland squad:Cumming, Chalobah, Clarke-Salter, Sarr, Zappacosta, Drinkwater, Barkley, Alonso, Pulisic, Hudson-Odoi, Abraham, Bergstrom, Miazga, Baker, Maatsen, Sterling, Loftus-Cheek, Gallagher, Rahman; Ziyech, Ugbo, Broja, Mendy, Kepa, Musonda, Anjorin.
German trio Kai Havertz, Timo Werner and Antonio Rudiger could potentially return as their three-week break following the end of the Euros is almost up, having been knocked out by England on June 29.
Whether that is the final squad isn’t yet known but Tuchel is likely to give all of the players available to him another chance to impress him next week as he plans his Premier League squad for the upcoming campaign.
The head coach wants to assess the players he already has at his disposal before deciding where he needs to go in the transfer market.
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