Rudiger, Barkley in Chelsea training but Hudson-Odoi a doubt for Valencia

By Sports Desk November 26, 2019

Antonio Rudiger and Ross Barkley took part in Chelsea training ahead of the Champions League trip to Valencia, but Callum Hudson-Odoi was absent.

Centre-back Rudiger has only featured once this season – in the 5-2 Premier League win at Wolves on September 14 – and underwent surgery on a pelvic injury this month.

The Germany international was involved in the section of training open to the media at Cobham on Tuesday, as was midfielder Barkley, who has been sidelined for five weeks with an ankle problem.

However, Hudson-Odoi sat out the session having not yet recovered from a hamstring complaint suffered while on international duty with England.

Chelsea take on Valencia on Wednesday at Mestalla knowing a win will secure their place in the last 16.

Frank Lampard's side are second in Group H after four matches, level on seven points with first-place Ajax and Valencia in third.

The Blues have never lost a competitive away game against Valencia, having won twice and drawn once in their previous three visits.

Related items

  • Lampard wants Chelsea stars to make some noise to stop season ending on sour note Lampard wants Chelsea stars to make some noise to stop season ending on sour note

    Frank Lampard wants his Chelsea stars to be more vocal on the pitch as they strive to finish in the Premier League's top four.

    Lampard complained he could only hear the opposition during the Blues' 3-0 defeat to Sheffield United at Bramall Lane last Saturday.

    Despite that setback, Chelsea remain in control of their own race for the Champions League spots this season, with Leicester City having lost 4-1 at Bournemouth on Sunday and Manchester United still in fifth after conceding a 96th-minute equaliser in a 2-2 draw with Southampton on Monday.

    Relegated Norwich City visit on Tuesday and Lampard is keen for his quieter players to come out of their shell at Stamford Bridge.

    "It's something I picked up before, something I talk about with the players and one of the easiest things to do on the pitch – to help your team-mates by being vocal," said the Chelsea head coach.

    "We don't have enough of it, for sure. We have to get better and it's something I drill into the players, particularly now where you can hear it because the stadiums feel different [without fans].

    "You can be as quiet as you want off the pitch – we have some quiet players who keep themselves to themselves – but they must come out of that on the pitch. They must demand the ball, otherwise the game can pass you by.

    "They must have character to talk to people around them and where we are young we have to improve. Maybe as the players grow into themselves a little bit, I keep telling them, the staff keep telling them, hopefully that message will hit home. But sometimes it's not that easy when players are generally quiet."

    Lampard expects his more senior players to take the lead as he hopes to see an appropriate response to their 11th league loss of the season.

    "I do expect a reaction," he said. "There are two types of defeat: there's a defeat against West Ham [3-2] where it's a game we dominate but make mistakes and it's a game I feel we really should win; then Sheffield United, where they were better than us.

    "The important thing now is how we react and I expect that from the players. There will be big personalities in the team. They need to stand up. It cannot be understated how big mentality is. It is very easy to look at talent but you also have to look at attitude within the team.

    "It's something we can improve. Younger players can be more vocal. Older players can take on responsibility of helping that. We're in a good place but it can improve. Critical times like now, where there's a lot on the line, it's time for people to make that improvement."

  • Rumour Has It: Barca remain keen on Lautaro Martinez, Chelsea eye Atletico's Oblak Rumour Has It: Barca remain keen on Lautaro Martinez, Chelsea eye Atletico's Oblak

    For most of the year, Lautaro Martinez has been tipped to leave Inter for Barcelona.

    Barca are eyeing a long-term replacement for veteran forward Luis Suarez, though, the coronavirus pandemic appears to have impacted their transfer plans.

    However, a blockbuster move could still be on the cards.

     

    TOP STORY – BARCA STILL WANT TO SIGN LAUTARO

    Barcelona remain keen on signing Inter star Lautaro Martinez at the end of the season, according to the front page of Tuesday's Mundo Deportivo.

    Barca's interest in Martinez is well documented but a transfer has been put on hold as the LaLiga giants re-assess their plans after the Argentina forward's €111million release clause expired at the start of the month.

    However, Barca head coach Quique Setien is reportedly considering three options in his pursuit to recruit Martinez.

    Ousmane Dembele could be sold to raise funds or a swap deal involving Arturo Vidal, Ivan Rakitic and Samuel Umtiti could be proposed to Inter, while a player plus cash offer including Junior Firpo is the third alternative.

     

    ROUND-UP

    - The Mirror says Chelsea are ready to swap goalkeepers. Unhappy with the world's most expensive keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, Chelsea are ready to use the Spaniard as a makeweight in a deal to sign Atletico Madrid star Jan Oblak.

    Paris Saint-Germain are eyeing in-demand Salzburg sensation Dominik Szoboszlai, reports Tuttosport. The Hungary teenager has been heavily linked to Milan and Napoli, as well as Arsenal.

    Ajax are hopeful of keeping star goalkeeper Andre Onana for one more season, claims De Telegraaf. Onana has been linked to the likes of Chelsea, Manchester United and Barca.

    - Journalist Nicolo Schira reports Napoli are confident of reaching an agreement with Lille forward Victor Osimhen. The Nigerian has been tipped to join the Serie A side, who have prepared a five-year contract worth €3.5m per season amid talk of an €80m transfer.

    - While Osimhen could arrive, Napoli are set to lose Arkadiusz Milik. Calciomercato claims Italian champions Juventus are interested, while the likes of Atletico, Tottenham and Roma are also keen. Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette is an alternative for Juve, as well as Atletico.

    - According to Calciomercato, Edinson Cavani has turned down a move to David Beckham's Inter Miami in MLS. A free agent since leaving PSG, Cavani is reportedly wanted by Roma.

    Everton and PSG both want to sign Napoli midfielder Allan, says Calciomercato. Napoli are looking to raise funds.

    Manchester City will accelerate their rebuilding plans after having their Champions League ban overturned, claims the Telegraph. Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly – also linked to United, Liverpool and Real Madrid previously – is reportedly high on the list of targets, which includes Leicester City full-back Ben Chilwell, Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish and Atletico star Saul Niguez.

  • MLS is Back Tournament: LAFC play out 3-3 thriller, Chicharito scores first Galaxy goal in loss MLS is Back Tournament: LAFC play out 3-3 thriller, Chicharito scores first Galaxy goal in loss

    Los Angeles FC rallied to rescue a 3-3 draw against Houston Dynamo in their MLS is Back Tournament opener, while Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez opened his account for LA Galaxy in a loss to Portland Timbers.

    LAFC overcame a 3-1 half-time deficit to salvage a point in Monday's Group F showdown with Houston at Walt Disney Resort in Orlando, Florida.

    Both teams were opening their MLS is Back Tournament campaigns after the 2020 season was postponed in March due to the coronavirus pandemic, which has wreaked havoc in the United States.

    The Dynamo made the perfect start thanks to Memo Rodriguez's first-half brace, sandwiched in between Bradley Wright-Phillips' goal for LAFC before Alberth Elis put Houston 3-1 ahead in the fifth minute of added time.

    While Houston dominated the opening 45 minutes, reigning Supporters' Shield holders LAFC fought back after the interval – Diego Rossi reducing the deficit with a thunderous strike in the 63rd minute.

    Brian Rodriguez completed the comeback six minutes later when slotted underneath Dynamo goalkeeper Marko Maric.

    With the result, Bob Bradley's LAFC became the second team in MLS history to play out two consecutive 3-3 draws after Chivas USA in July 2006 – the Los Angeles franchise drew 3-3 against Philadelphia Union prior to the postponement.

    In Monday's other Group F match, Los Angeles rivals the Galaxy lost 2-1 against the 10-man Timbers.

    Goals from Jeremy Ebobisse and Sebastian Blanco gave the Timbers a 2-0 lead after 66 minutes, following a goalless first half.

    Former Manchester United and Real Madrid striker Hernandez – who arrived from Sevilla in January – scored his first Galaxy goal with two minutes of normal time remaining after Portland's Dario Zuparic was sent off in the 75th minute but it was not enough.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.