Christian Pulisic suffered another hamstring injury during Chelsea’s 5-2 defeat by West Brom on Saturday.
Pulisic scored Chelsea’s opening goal but had to be replaced at half-time by Mason Mount, and the club have now revealed the extent of the problem.
“Christian did a sprint when he came back out for the second half and said that he felt his hamstring would not survive the game if he continued. So we had to make the decision to substitute him straight away,” Chelsea head coach Thomas Tuchel said.
News of another blow for Pulisic hampers preparations for Chelsea’s Champions League quarter-final first leg against Porto on Wednesday.
Pulisic’s injury will be monitored by the club, but the American is a doubt for that European tie.
It is another setback for the player who has already missed time this season due to injury. Pulisic also suffered a tendon problem last season.
He was then taken off in the FA Cup final defeat by Arsenal last August with a hamstring injury.
Tuchel said he hopes his Chelsea side’s humbling defeat will be a wake-up call.
Doubles from Matheus Pereira and Callum Robinson and a strike from Mbaye Diagne steered West Brom to a shock victory at Stamford Bridge, following Thiago Silva’s sending off on 29 minutes for two bookings.
It was the first defeat Tuchel has suffered in charge of Chelsea since taking charge 15 games ago and while it leaves the Blues vulnerable to being leapfrogged in the table by London rivals West Ham and Tottenham this weekend, the German says his team need to respond quickly for their Champions League quarter-final first leg against Porto.
“Hopefully it’s a big wake-up call for all of us, me included,” Tuchel told BT Sport. “We will get the right response because this is sport and this is absolutely necessary. First of all, it’s important we digest it, because it’s a lot to digest. I did not see it coming. Now we have to take our responsibilities – me included – and shake it off and continue tomorrow.”