Reece James injury: Chelsea defender ruled out for up to a month after setback

Reece James has been ruled out for up to a month after suffering an injury setback against Bournemouth on Tuesday.

The Chelsea defender lasted almost an hour on his Premier League return before he felt discomfort in the same knee that ruled him out of England’s World Cup campaign.

James left Stamford Bridge in a knee brace and underwent a scan on Wednesday, with the results confirming the extent of the 23-year-old’s injury. James had previously been ruled out for eight weeks when he sustained the initial knee problem against AC Milan in October.

The latest setback could rule the right back out of five Premier League games, as well as Chelsea’s FA Cup third round match against Manchester City.

Starting with a trip to Nottingham Forest on New Year’s Day, Chelsea face Manchester City, Fulham, Crystal Palace and Liverpool in the next month.

In a post on Twitter, James said 2022 has been his “toughest year to date” after suffering the setback.

“Just wanna thank you all for the support, none of you go unnoticed,” he said. “It’s naturally effected me mentally, I’m currently just tryna deal with the cards I’ve been dealt.”

A Chelsea statement said: “Defender Reece James underwent assessment earlier today after being substituted during the second half of last night’s 2-0 Premier League victory over AFC Bournemouth due to a knee injury.

“Scan results have regrettably confirmed a setback for the 23-year-old, with Reece now set to be ruled out for up to a month.”