Chelsea defender Ben Chilwell is expected to need knee ligament surgery and could miss the rest of the season, PA understands.
The England full-back damaged his anterior cruciate ligament in Chelsea’s 4-0 Champions League win over Juventus on November 23.
The Blues had hoped Chilwell could return to action without surgery, but the former Leicester star should now undergo the ligament repair operation.
Chelsea could look to the transfer market to bolster their Premier League title bid in January, with Everton’s Lucas Digne strongly mooted as an option for the Blues.
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Marcos Alonso is Chelsea’s sole frontline left wing-back in Chilwell’s absence, leaving boss Thomas Tuchel having to shuffle his resources for alternatives.
Callum Hudson-Odoi, Saul Niguez and Christian Pulisic have deputised without yet appearing fully comfortable in the role.
Chelsea could also look at recalling either Ian Maatsen or Emerson Palmieri from their loan stints.
Maatsen has impressed at Coventry in the Championship, while Emerson has been a regular in his temporary stint at Lyon.
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