Reece James bemoans ‘toughest year to date’ after latest injury setback

Chelsea defender Reece James has admitted 2022 has been his “toughest year to date” after he suffered an injury setback on Tuesday.

The England international missed the World Cup in Qatar due to a knee injury but returned to start the Blues’ 2-0 win over Bournemouth.

James lasted almost hour at Stamford Bridge before he felt discomfort in the same knee and was forced off. He left the stadium wearing a knee brace.

“2022 has been the toughest year to date,” he said on Twitter. “Just wanna thank you all for the support, none of you go unnoticed.

“It’s naturally effected me mentally, I’m currently just tryna deal with the cards I’ve been dealt. I hope your end of year is filled with peace, joy and happiness.”

There are now fears Chelsea could be without one of their key players for another extended spell.

“It’s really too soon, but it’s the same area so we are concerned and we’ll have to see over the next 24-48 hours,” said boss Graham Potter.

“He felt something there and we will have to find out the extent of it and keep our fingers crossed. He’s disappointed, of course he is. At the moment we are hoping it isn’t as bad.

“He’s been really disappointed to miss the World Cup, of course. It was a huge blow to him. You could see today his quality and what he brings to the team.

“He’s had to deal with the injury and he’s done that well. The plan was to play 60 minutes today so now he’s disappointed, of course.

“We hope it’s not as bad as it was and he can have a speedy recovery.”