Ahead of Chelsea’s game with Aston Villa tomorrow, manager José Mourinho has spoken to the press this afternoon to give team news and a injury update on star striker Diego Costa and midfielder Ramires.
Diego Costa was rested for Chelsea’s Capital One Cup win over Bolton Wanderers midweek with Mourinho previously admitting his £32 million summer signing isn’t fit to play more than once a week just yet due to his ongoing hamstring issues.
Speaking to Chelseafc.com, José Mourinho confirmed that Diego Costa will start on Saturday but is unsure whether the Spaniard will be able to face Sporting Club of Portugal on Tuesday in the UEFA Champions League.
The manager did confirm that Ramires is the only player unavailable for this weekend’s game at Stamfodr Bridge. The Brazilian has a muscle injury that is expected to keep him out of action for a few more weeks yet.
When asked who the unavailable players are for Saturday, Mourinho told the club’s official website:
“Ramires. Everybody else is good.
“It’s a muscular injury, he won’t be able to play on Tuesday or even against Arsenal.
“He needs the two-week international break [to recover], maybe he will be back after that.”
When asked for an update on Diego Costa, Mourinho said:
“Diego plays tomorrow and starts without problems. The question is always the same; can he finish the game and be in condition to play in Lisbon 48hrs later?
“I don’t know but at the moment Im not thinking about Sporting or the Champions League, I’m thinking about Aston Villa and the Premier League. He plays for sure, he starts the game for sure and he’s in a very good condition to start.”
Chelsea head into the weekend’s action top of the Premier League table, three points ahead of both Southampton and Aston Villa who sit directly below them on 10 points.
The Blues will be looking to increase their lead over the chasing pack with another victory this weekend. With Liverpool facing Everton and Arsenal hosting Tottenham Hotspur either side of this game on Saturday, points will be dropped amongst the teams who are expected to challenge for a top four finish this season.