Thomas Tuchel has confirmed that Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante are fit to feature as Chelsea prepare to face Leicester in the FA Cup final tomorrow.
Chelsea face the Foxes in the FA Cup final at Wembley tomorrow evening, as the west London side look to win their first piece of major silverware since the German’s appointment as head coach earlier this year.
The two sides are separated by just two points in the Premier League table ahead of what promises to be a tightly-contested cup final clash, with Chelsea seeking to win a ninth FA Cup and seventh since the turn of the century.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Tuchel has confirmed that Chelsea have been boosted by the returns to fitness of influential midfield duo Kovacic and Kante.
Kovacic has not featured since sustaining a hamstring injury in the build up to the club’s Champions League quarter-final second leg with Porto last month and Tuchel admits the return of the Croatia international is a ‘huge’ boost.
“Kova is with us again,” Tuchel said.
“It’s huge. Mateo has everything we need in midfield. He has experience, power, acceleration, deceleration, he can dribble with the ball and beat players, he is fast and has physical ability.
“You could see when we missed Mateo and N’Golo in the same match we lacked quality and energy and experience. Billy [Gilmour] did a huge job in both games, but it’s still not fair to compare him to these players because they have more experience and they are a step ahead in their development.
“It’s what we need in the key moments of the season at the end of the season. It’s big news for us Kova is back. He has a huge impact in the dressing room also and is a very positive guy.”
Tuchel also confirmed that Kante is set to start against his former side tomorrow evening, with the France international having missed the midweek defeat to Arsenal with an Achilles problem.
“We took the decision together, N’Golo, me and the medical team, to give him the Arsenal match to rest and have treatment to the right Achilles, I think.
“It was pain management, not a huge injury, nothing to be afraid of getting bigger. It was just there and it was a bit annoying.
“He did all training sessions yesterday and today, no complaints. He will start tomorrow and very likely he will finish the game for us.”
Read Also – Iconic Performances: The ‘Stevie G’ FA Cup final