N’Golo Kante: Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel says ‘key player’ set to miss four weeks

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Kante made 26 Premier League appearances for Chelsea last season
Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel says “key player” N’Golo Kante will miss at least four weeks with a hamstring injury.

The 31-year-old France midfielder picked up the injury in Chelsea’s 2-2 draw with Tottenham and missed the 3-0 defeat by Leeds last weekend.

“He gives something to our team that no other player in the world can give to any other team,” Tuchel said.

Chelsea will be without Tuchel in the dugout against Leicester on Saturday because of his one-match touchline ban.

He had appealed against the ban, imposed for his confrontation with Antonio Conte at the end of his side’s derby against Tottenham on 14 August.

But on Friday, the Football Association confirmed his appeal had not been successful.

Tuchel will be able to attend the Leicester match at Stamford Bridge and can interact with his squad, but he must not enter the dugout.

‘He has a huge influence’
Speaking earlier on Friday, Tuchel said it would be difficult to replace Kante.

“If your key player is out, it’s a situation you don’t like but have to deal with,” Tuchel said. “It has huge influence.

“It’s difficult to replace him, he’s very unique. We were full of hope after pre-season because we built his pre-season very individual.”

Chelsea news and views in one place
Despite shaking off a knee injury, Croatia international Mateo Kovacic, who has yet to make an appearance this season, is not ready to start in Chelsea’s midfield for Saturday’s game against Leicester.

Tuchel expects to serve his one-match touchline ban this weekend following his confrontation with Spurs boss Antonio Conte.

Summer signing Kalidou Koulibaly will also be absent from Saturday’s match at Stamford Bridge after picking up a red card against Leeds.

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