Denis Zakaria has not played a minute for Chelsea after arriving in September and Graham Potter has revealed his reasoning.
The Blues announced the loan signing of the Swiss midfielder on Deadline Day from Juventus. He arrived alongside Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as Chelsea made some late moves in the summer transfer window.
However, the 25-year-old is yet to feature for the west London side despite being available to play. A large reason behind his move to Stamford Bridge was head coach at the time Thomas Tuchel.
Things quickly changed at Chelsea though, after a 1-0 loss to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League, the German manager was relieved of his duties.
Following this, the Genevan sent a message to the club, revealing his desire to play under Tuchel. Since Potter has arrived, he has not had an opportunity but will be hoping he soon gets a chance.
With the World Cup rapidly approaching, Zakaria will be wanting to build up fitness by getting minutes. That might be quite a tricky task though as Potter has seemingly found his favoured options.
In the centre of midfield, Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic and Ruben Loftus-Cheek have been utilised in different variations. Mason Mount and Conor Gallagher have also featured further back as well meaning there hasn’t been a sniff for Zakaria.
Chelsea played Brentford in midweek and Zakaria was on the bench but did not appear. At the weekend the Blues take on Manchester United at Stamford Bridge and they’ll be hoping to keep their unbeaten streak going.
Under Potter, Chelsea have won a total of five games and drawn two.
Ahead of the game the 47-year-old touched upon why Zakaria is yet to feature.
In his pre-match press conference he said: “We’ve got a squad of 24, we’ve used quite a lot. In that position, there are good players.
“He’s been patient and competing, and ready to help the team. You can’t play everybody.
“He’s been unfortunate, he’s done nothing wrong.”
Up until the World Cup the Blues have a hectic schedule, so maybe an opportunity will fall the way of the midfielder.