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Mauricio Pochettino speaks to Noni Madueke as Chelsea manager delivers verdict

Madueke has not played since returning from England Under-21s due to a minor injury, but he was ruled out of Chelsea’s Carabao Cup win over Brighton in midweek as he was in shape.

“It’s a question of choice,” was Pochettino’s simple explanation at Stamford Bridge after the match. Now the Argentina coach has given a more detailed explanation as to why Madueke was not involved and used the situation to send a wider message to his young squad.

He said: “It’s clear from this video, we were talking about this with him. I think this is something we need to avoid. All players need to know that when we are a Chelsea player to try to avoid these things. It wasn’t a big problem but we should always avoid these kinds of situations.

“I think it’s very clear that he needs to avoid it. But he is recovering for the national team and we will see if he is fit and can be involved and selected.

“But we’re talking about what you’re asking me because it’s something that young players need to improve on. Not just him. Many, many players have to be professional and show respect because of the badge we have here.

Pochettino is ready to involve Madueke in the trip to Fulham on Monday evening. “In my opinion, he is working very hard to reach the levels we want after his injury,” he said.

“He came back from the international break maybe 10 or 12 days ago. Now he feels good and has recovered. Now he is trying to get in shape to be on the same level as the team.

Chelsea are expected to be without 10 players for the west London derby with eight injured and Malo Gusto and Nicolas Jackson suspended. Carney Chukwuemeka is back and could be involved at Craven Cottage.


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