Chelsea full back Cesar Azpilicueta is out of action for 10 days with a muscle injury sustained in Saturday’s 2-0 home win over Newcastle, according to reports.
The Spanish international was forced off in the 37th minute at Stamford Bridge after straining his groin in a foot-race with Newcastle winger Remy Cabella.
Mourinho was quick to replace the 25-year-old with versatile utility man Filipe Luis, but assistant Steve Holland – who has been standing in for the Chelsea manager’s media commitments – played down fears of long-term injury.
No major concerns
"Azpilicueta has a slight groin problem, we don't think it's a major one. We'll know more when he has the scans," he said.
"Azpilicueta has a slight groin problem, we don't think it's a major one. We'll know more when he has the scans"
It's now believed that the full-back will be out for around 10 days, which will mean missing the Blues' next Premier League game against Swansea City – but more importantly the Capital One Cup semi-final first-leg match with Liverpool.
Should Azpilicueta recover on schedule he would be ready to return to action for Chelsea’s FA Cup fourth round tie against either Millwall or Bradford City on January 24.
The former Marseille defender has become an important part of Mourinho’s plans this season after he saw off competition from Ashley Cole for the starting left-back position early last season.
And despite the £16 million signing of more naturally left-sided Filipe Luis from Atletico Madrid last summer, Azpilicueta has cemented his authority at full-back and has started 17 of Chelsea’s 21 league games.