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Injury expert worried by James' latest setback at Chelsea
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Danny Ryan
Chelsea have confirmed Reece James is set for another spell on the sidelines
Chelsea have confirmed Reece James is set for another spell on the sidelines

Injury analyst Ben Dinnery says Reece James' situation will be of huge concern to Chelsea amid reports he could miss up to three months with the hamstring problem he sustained in last Sunday's 2-0 defeat to Everton.

The Blues captain had to be subbed off in the 27th minute at Goodison Park, with the 24-year-old restricted to just five Premier League starts this season.

Dinnery believes the England international is caught in a "vicious cycle" which could prove hard to resolve.

Speaking to LiveScore on behalf of, he said: "Coming into this season, Reece was basically a one in two game player in the Premier League [in terms of availability].

"And the difficulty is with that, you're always playing catch up.

"You're not getting the important work on the training pitch. Then when the Premier League comes around, you're having to adjust to the intensity.

"Nothing can replicate the Premier League, so James is caught up in this vicious cycle — and it is a worry.

"Looking ahead to the Euros and if James was part of England's squad, you're looking at another disrupted summer that could hamper his 2024-25 season.

"Footballers are in such a time-sensitive environment and obviously, James is a high-profile player.

"It's about weighing up the pros and cons to decide when to carefully integrate him back into the team."

Partey over

Another high-profile Premier League player hampered by injuries in recent years is Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey.

The Ghanaian is currently sidelined with a hamstring issue after suffering from a groin problem earlier in the season.

Partey has started just three Premier League matches this term as a result — and Dinnery thinks the 30-year-old is now a player Mikel Arteta cannot rely on.

He explained: "Partey has come to a league with different demands in terms of physical output.

"Again, his situation comes down to that vicious cycle. Once you've had a muscle problem, you're always at a heightened risk of picking up others.

"It's difficult to get out of that cycle. It can be done but the player needs to be managed correctly.

"I think now, Partey is a player you wouldn't necessarily rely on to be a mainstay in Arsenal's midfield. Arteta may have to choose which competitions he deploys him in."

Thomas Partey has not played for Arsenal since their 1-0 win over Manchester City in October
Thomas Partey has not played for Arsenal since their 1-0 win over Manchester City in October

Perfect storm

Dinnery says we are seeing an increase in Premier League injuries this season, with numerous factors contributing to what he describes as a "perfect storm".

He said: "Are we seeing an increase in injuries? Yes.

"It's certainly up on last year, before the World Cup in Qatar, but the difficulty we've had comparing seasons post-pandemic is they've not been like-for-like.

"Every season has been fairly nuanced with how players have had to manage their workloads, with shorter pre-seasons and major international tournaments.

"There's been a lot of stuff impacting availability and the ability to prepare for a campaign.

"The less time you have to prepare, the more susceptible you become to injury. So all these factors have created a perfect storm.

"In addition you have VAR interruptions which extend games past the 100-minute mark, as well as the nature of the league itself with more high intensity sprints than ever."


ChelseaReece JamesPremier League
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