Chelsea star James could return by this date - Dinnery

By Ben Dinnery

25th Jan, 2022 | 7:00pm

Medical expert names James return date after Chelsea news Tuchel 'won't make public'

Reece James could return from his hamstring injury in time to play for Chelsea at the Club World Cup.

That is the view of injury expert Ben Dinnery, who runs the Premier Injuries site and has a background in medicine and data analysis.

James has been out of action since suffering the thigh injury in the 1-1 draw with Brighton last month (29 December).

But the 22-year-old right-back is now back in training at Cobham.

As quoted by club media last Friday (21 January), Thomas Tuchel admitted: “We have a timeframe [on James’ return] but we will not make it public.”

The German manager’s side get their club Club World Cup campaign underway in the United Arab Emirates at the semi-final stage on 9 February.

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Dinnery examined Tuchel’s refusal to give an indication of when James will return and suggested that we could see him in action in the UAE.

“Thomas Tuchel will say one thing but the reality of the situation is that it won’t deter questions,” he told Football Insider‘s Adam Williams.

“Chelsea haven’t been in the best run of form. That has coincided with the absences of the likes of Reece James and Ben Chilwell.

“Tuchel’s approach is maybe good in being able to manage the injury and remove the pressure from the situation.

“Nothing is set in stone and it can be volatile. With hamstring issues, the situation can change from day to day, let alone week to week.

“Players can progress and respond as hoped but you also get plenty of setbacks.

“You also have to consider the influence of stakeholders and how that impacts the decision-making process.

“Is the Club World Cup realistic? It’s a possibility. It’s very much a tick-box exercise.

“You need to be coming through your activities unscathed, without any sort of reaction and then you can progress.

“Once you rejoin the group, you have a better understanding of where you are.

James has chipped in with an impressive five goals and six assists in 23 appearances this term.

Trevor Chalobah, Andreas Christensen and Ben Chilwell are all also injured, while Edouard Mendy is away at the Africa Cup of Nations.

In other news, Huddersfield Town open talks to sign ex-Chelsea star Jamal Blackman.