With a series of tough fixtures coming up, Chelsea manager Guus Hiddink has said that he might rest top marksman Diego Costa for the Premier League match against Norwich City.
Costa has been in good form of late, but has started every game for the Blues since January 2016. With difficult fixtures against the likes of PSG in the Champions League and Everton in an FA Cup quarter-final looming on the horizon, Hiddink will be looking to have his key players as fresh as possible.
Since Diego Costa has not had much of a rest in the last couple of months, Hiddink says that the Spanish international may be rested for the game against Norwich. The Dutchman could start with Frenchman Loic Remy up front, while Burkina Faso youngster Bertrand Traore is also an option for the manager.
“The problem with Remy was that he picked up injuries repeatedly,” Hiddink was quoted as saying by Chelsea’s official website. “That’s always damaging when you’re challenging for the status of being Diego Costa’s replacement. He admitted himself there were some opportunities before when Diego was out but he wasn’t ready to play which was a little bit damaging.”
Hiddink also has the option of Bertrand Traore
With Loic Remy not performing at the required level and Radamel Falcao recovering from yet another long-term injury, Chelsea have had to rely almost entirely on Diego Costa this campaign.
However, youngster Bertrand Traore has begun to make his mark in 2016, scoring against the likes of MK Dons, Newcastle United and Manchester City.
“He has always been ambitious, he is very fresh and I like his attitude,” said Hiddink. “He is not afraid to make errors, and he is not influenced by external circumstances. He’s fresh whether there are no spectators on the pitch or whether there are 40,000 in the stadium. He’s not impacted by that.”
The 20-year-old has featured from the bench for Chelsea thus far, but could get his first start at Carrow Road on Tuesday. Traore became the first player from Burkina Faso to score a goal in the Premier League last month. The striker, who impressed for Vitesse Arnhem last season, can become an instrumental part of the Chelsea team in the future. For now, however, he has to fight off competition from Remy and Brazilian striker Alexandre Pato in order to get some time on the pitch.