James returns to Chelsea training after knee injury ended World Cup hopes

By Sports Desk December 05, 2022 114

Reece James has returned to training with Chelsea after being omitted from England's World Cup squad due to injury.

The full-back was left out of Gareth Southgate's 26-man travelling squad to Qatar, where England face France in the quarter-finals on Saturday, after being sidelined since October 11 with a knee issue.

Southgate referenced "too many unknowns" over the Chelsea defender's recovery for leaving out James, who sustained the injury in a Champions League clash with Milan.

James spoke openly of his disappointment to miss out on FIFA's top tournament as he acknowledged "there was risk on both sides but it was one I was willing to take".

The 22-year-old returned to training on Monday for Chelsea's first session in Abu Dhabi at their warm-weather training camp as Graham Potter's side seek improvements after the World Cup break.

Chelsea lost their last three Premier League games before the mid-season interval to leave Potter's men eight points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, albeit with a game in hand.

A downturn in form coincided with losing numerous key players to injury, with Wesley Fofana, Ben Chilwell and Kepa Arrizabalaga joining James as absentees.

Fofana and Chilwell, the latter who also missed out on the World Cup with England due to injury, will hope to be fit for Chelsea's Premier League return at home to Bournemouth on December 27.

Chelsea next face Aston Villa in a mid-season friendly in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

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Last modified on Monday, 05 December 2022 16:43
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