David Luiz has added to Chelsea’s woes with an injury he fears may rule him out for weeks.
Luiz was on the Liberty Stadium pitch for only 22 minutes as Chelsea went out of the Capital One Cup in the semi-final but he damaged a calf muscle in the final seconds.
Rafa Benitez’s squad is already depleted by Eden Hazard’s ban for kicking a ball boy and because John Mikel Obi and Victor Moses are at the Africa Cup of Nations.
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Luiz has provided a valuable midfield option in Mikel’s absence but the Brazilian has been suffering from slight ankle and calf problems which have limited his activity.
He was ruled out of last week’s game against Southampton, back against Arsenal on Sunday then on the bench on Wednesday as Chelsea failed to overturn a two-goal deficit in the second leg.
His injury could open a route for captain John Terry to return to the side in the FA Cup fourth round against Brentford on Sunday. Terry has started only one of the last 25 games due to a ban and injury. He has been on the bench for the last four games but has yet to start under Benitez.