Chelsea duo a doubt for Inter clash

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Jose Bosingwa and Michael Essien are struggling to be fit in time for Chelsea's Champions League return leg against Inter Milan at Stamford Bridge in just under a fortnight's time.

Essien has not played for Chelsea since he suffered a hamstring injury against Apoel Nicosia in December and his problems have been further compounded by a knee problem he sustained while with Ghana in the African Nations Cup.

Bosingwa is back in light training after knee surgery but still short of match practice.

The 27-year-old Essien had an operation in January but he is currently with left-back Ashley Cole, who is recovering from a fractured ankle, at a sporting injury clinic in France.

Chelsea trail 2-1 to Inter from the first leg of their last-16 tie in the San Siro and it is unlikely Essien will be fit in time for the return encounter against former boss Jose Mourinho and his side.

However, Russian international Yury Zhirkov, who missed the first leg with a calf problem, should be fit to play at left-back.

Portugal midfielder Deco, who has been struggling with a knee problem, could be in line for a return against Stoke in the FA Cup quarter-final at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

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Premier League
UEFA Champions League
Jose Bosingwa
Michael Essien

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