Chelsea will go into their crunch European tie against Paris Saint-Germain on Wednesday night without their captain John Terry who has failed to recover from a hamstring injury. PSG head to Stamford Bridge with a 2-1 lead and Blues interim manager Guus Hiddink was hoping to have their inspirational leader back in the lineup.
However Hiddink was forced to shelve his plan to include Terry in a seven-a-side practice match to prove his fitness at the weekend because his condition had not improved enough.
“I don’t think John will make it on Wednesday. For the time being, there has not been enough development to put him on the list” said Hiddink.
“It’s not worse – he trained and had treatment on Saturday morning, and he can run, but he cannot go into a longer stretch where you have to accelerate. There he has to be careful.
“When he is ready to do so, maybe on Tuesday, he will play in a practice match, but I don’t think he will make it. Hopefully, let’s see what can be done for next weekend.”
The first-leg loss in Paris remains Chelsea’s only defeat in 16 matches under Guus Hiddink this term, and the stand-in manager wants the west Londoners to bare their teeth in the home return.
“We will need to be angry from the start on Wednesday, but in a controlled way,” he said. “We are playing a class team and they will punish you if you start sloppy.”
Paris have not won in two Ligue 1 outings, their worst run of the season, but felt secure enough at the top of the table to give 18-year-old midfielder Christopher Nkunku his debut and play Presnel Kimpembe, 20, at centre-back in Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Montpellier.
Diego Costa may be the man to watch for Chelsea; the Spanish international has scored ten goals since Hiddink’s arrival having managed just four in 2015/16 before the Dutchman’s appointment. The UEFA Champions League has been a goalscoring blind spot of late, having hit eight for Atlético Madrid en route to the 2014 final, Costa has notched only once in 14 European appearances for Chelsea.