Chelsea bring injured trio to Amsterdam for final
Terry, Hazard and Mikel face late fitness tests before Benfica clash
Chelsea’s John Terry receiving treatment on an ankle injury during the game against Aston Villa at Villa Park. Photograph: Philip Brown/Reuters
The trio were part of Chelsea’s 25-man playing party which travelled for tomorrow’s match at the Amsterdam ArenA, the Blues confirmed on their website.
Terry (ankle) and Hazard (hamstring) suffered injuries in Saturday’s Premier League win at Aston Villa.
Terry missed last season’s Champions League final win in Munich through suspension and his injury means he faces further continental disappointment.
The 32-year-old former England captain’s place in the side was already in doubt in a competitive position in central defence, with David Luiz, Gary Cahill and Branislav Ivanovic the Blues’ other options.
The loss of Belgian playmaker Hazard would be more keenly felt as they go in search of back-to-back European trophies.
Coupled with the concern over Mikel, who has a hip problem, it may mean Frank Lampard is included, in all likelihood as captain.
Lampard, who became the club’s record goalscorer by netting twice in the win at Villa Park, could be deployed in a deep midfield role alongside Luiz, with Ramires pushed further forward alongside Juan Mata and Oscar.
Ryan Bertrand, Ashley Cole’s left back deputy, was also on the flight despite a recent knee injury.
Bertrand impressed on his Champions League debut in Munich 12 months ago.
Midfielder Oriol Romeu, who has not featured since rupturing his anterior cruciate ligament in December, also travelled, as did 18-year-old Dutchman Nathan Ake.
Also among the 25 was striker Demba Ba, despite being cup-tied having represented Newcastle earlier in the competition.
Ba’s ineligibility means Fernando Torres is near-certain to start up front after five goals in five Europa League matches, a run which has come despite the striker failing to find the net in the Premier League in 2013.
Chelsea took four goalkeepers — Petr Cech, plus Ross Turnbull, Hilario and Jamal Blackman — and Portugal full back Paulo Ferreira travelled for the match against his countrymen, but is unlikely to feature.