Kai Havertz has not been named in Chelsea’s FA Cup final squad after suffering from a hamstring issue ahead of the clash against Liverpool.
The German international travelled from Cobham with his teammates on Friday but was not named among the Blues’ substitutes as Romelu Lukaku, Christian Pulisic comprised Tuchel’s front three after the trio all scored against Leeds at Elland Road. Whether Havertz or Lukaku were likely to start was one of the main talking points heading into the match against Jurgen Klopp’s side and it came as a suprise not to see the 22-year-old at least among the substitutes. The former Bayer Leverkusen ace is still present at Wembley however.
Thomas Tuchel revealed that they waited as late as possible in the hopes of Havertz proving his fitness. The German coach said: “We tried until the last minute. He has hamstring problems. Not a real injury. He feels if he goes, there will be an injury. If he says this in front of a final it is serious enough to not start. He puts in a lot of sprints, intensity runs. We cannot risk this.”
There was just one change from the Chelsea team that started in the Premier League on Wednesday night as Thiago Silva returned to the XI in place of Andreas Christensen, who is also absent from the squad entirely and Mateo Kovacic made a miraculous return after leaving the pitch injured against the Whites. The Croatian suffered a heavy blow to his left ankle but managed to not extend upon the damage he had already received earlier in the season.
Chelsea XI: Mendy, Chalobah, Silva, Rudiger, James, Kovacic, Jorginho, Alonso, Mount, Lukaku, Pulisic.
Substitutes: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Sarr, Kante, Loftus-Cheek, Saul, Barkley, Werner, Ziyech.