Graham Potter provides update on Reece James injury ahead of Bournemouth clash

Reece James injury update
Graham Potter believes that Reece James is mentally prepared for the second-half of the season after injury prevented him from participating in the FIFA World Cup.

The England International was set for a place in Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad, until he suffered a knee injury in Chelsea’s 2 – 0 win over AC Milan in mid-October.

Potter commented on the difficulty faced by the 23-year-old as he looks set to play in Chelsea’s clash with AFC Bournemouth on Tuesday.

He said: “It was a World Cup and they come around every four years. So when you’re young, the perspective is not so easy to get.

“You are young and you want to play. That’s really understandable. It’s the same for Reece, Ben Chilwell, N’Golo Kante. It’s brutal really to have to deal with.

“You can try to help them and give them a bit of perspective but in the end it has to come from them, their families and those people close to them.

“I have to say he is in a good mood, he is in a good place. He has trained with us, is training well and is a good team-mate. He has dealt with it well.

“There is not too much you can say. You say it will get better with time and you have to focus on the things you can control. But there is nothing you can say to a player that will make it get better.

“He is missing the World Cup. What can I say? All I can do is acknowledge that it is upsetting, that whatever he is feeling is normal and help him move forwards.

“It was a challenging period for him. It was a challenging period for all the players. There were another 12 that are watching their team-mates and getting injured and missing the World Cup. You have to think on some level there is an effect there. They’re only human.

Speaking on James’ return to top form, Potter said:

“He’s been training for a few weeks now and that helps,”

“The tough time is when you can’t play football because you’re injured. And there’s a World Cup going on, it’s a reminder even more so of what you are missing.

“For him, the best thing is that he is playing football and the World Cup is finished now and he can concentrate on playing football.

“He was in a really good place before he got injured. If you look at how the team was functioning before he got injured and after. It’s not the only reason of course but Reece is a top, top player and when he is not with us it’s a miss.

“I am confident the more football he plays the more we will see what a fantastic footballer he really is.”

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