Chelsea have been dealt a blow after N’Golo Kante suffered a muscle injury on international duty.
The 28-year-old had been included in France’s starting lineup for the Euro 2020 qualifier against Iceland on Friday.
However, Kante was forced to withdraw after pulling up with a hamstring problem in the warm-up and was replaced by Tottenham’s Moussa Sissoko.
It is the latest in the number of injuries Kante has suffered this season, having missed several games due to a knee problem sustained in the 4-0 defeat at Manchester United.
Kante has only recently turned to full fitness and has been influential for the Blues since his return, scoring against both Liverpool and Southampton.
But his latest setback could see the tireless midfielder miss Chelsea’s next game against Newcastle United on October 19, with Mateo Kovacic poised to deputise if he fails to recover.
According to Evening Standard, France coach, Didier Deschamps, revealed that Frank Lampard had asked him not to select Kante due to his injury problems.
“Lampard asked me not to pick [N’Golo] Kanté at the last time,” he told reporters when announcing his squad.
“If that’s still that way. Maybe I’ll call him later to tell him it would be nice if you play Olivier Giroud a little bit,” Deschamps added.