Thursday 20 July 2017

Drogba may need hernia op

Jason Burt

With injuries to totemic players being the theme of the week, Carlo Ancelotti confirmed yesterday that Didier Drogba had been playing with a hernia problem "for three or four months" and might need an operation at the end of the season.

The 32-year-old striker has recovered from a sore knee and after being rested for last week's humiliation of Aston Villa, will start tomorrow's vital meeting away to Manchester United but will postpone any surgery until the end of the season.

"He's living with this problem," Ancelotti said. "Sometimes he has a problem after the game but during the week he is OK. He doesn't need an operation now. If he has one at the end of the season he will be ready in seven days. It would be a small surgery."

That will come as a huge relief to Chelsea supporters, especially as Ancelotti said that Michael Essien's slow recovery from his knee injury means he is unlikely to play again this season.

"He's not ready again," Ancelotti said, adding that there was better news about Ashley Cole. Essien, the manager hoped, might play in the final league game of the season, at home to Wigan Athletic, a match which he maintained could take the title race down to the wire.Such is the tightness of the contest between Chelsea, United and Arsenal he may well be right, which is why the injuries to Wayne Rooney and Cesc Fabregas might have swung things in Ancelotti's favour.

"Everyone knows how important Rooney is for them (United)," he said. "This injury could be an advantage for us. I was sorry for him but I think without Rooney, for us it's better." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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