Thomas Tuchel has delivered an update on the injury which kept Edouard Mendy out of Chelsea’s derby win at Tottenham, with the Blues’ first-choice goalkeeper carrying a “very painful” knock.
Mendy had been hurt late on in the Champions League win over Zenit, with serious discomfort meaning that he would have been unable to compete as normal in a fiery Premier League clash with their London neighbours.
Chelsea boss Tuchel told reporters: “We tried throughout the week and on Saturday in training it was so-so.
It comes from the last-minute kick against Zenit in the Champions League.
“It is very painful and he did not feel 100 per cent comfortable going for a full stretch or to land on it. He didn’t feel comfortable to fight at set-pieces or corners.
“So we decided to go with 100 per cent and that was Kepa and have Edou with us to be supportive and have good energy.
“I’m happy Kepa played a crucial role and kept a clean sheet. This is what he deserves and I am happy that he could.”
The Blues will, however, be hoping to have their established number one back in contention for their next Premier League outing.
A heavyweight clash with title holders Manchester City is set to be staged at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, with Tuchel locking horns with Pep Guardiola’s men for the first time since beating them in the 2021 Champions League final.