The reigning PFA Player of the Year has missed the last three weeks with a hamstring injury he picked up on international duty with France in early October.
However, Kante, 26, trained with Chelsea’s first team in London on Monday before the team head to AS Roma to play in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday.
After missing five games for Chelsea — a defeat to Crystal Palace, draw with Roma, plus three narrow victories with plenty of shaky defensive displays — Kante’s return would obviously be a huge boost for Antonio Conte.
The Italian manager told the media over the weekend that Kante could be ready to face Roma in a massive UCL clash.
“I hope so. He could be ready. I know very well the importance of this player. I want to be sure he is ready. I hope to have him in this game, but I prefer to not take this type of risk. If he is ready, he plays,” Conte said.
This is a big week in Chelsea’s season and will go a long way to deciding if they will be challenging for both the UCL and Premier League titles.
Sitting top of UCL Group C on 7 points, a win in Rome would all but secure Chelsea’s passage into the last 16 of the Champions League. Then on Sunday they face Manchester United and their former manager Jose Mourinho at Stamford Bridge, with the chance to move just one point behind United if they win.
Kante, who had such a huge impact last season in their title-winning campaign after arriving from Leicester City, is key to their success and although Tiemoue Bakayoko has stepped in to deliver a few goals as well as his battling qualities in recent weeks, no player on the planet right now can control an engine room like Kante.
And of course, the USA have plenty of talented youngsters so all eyes will be on Mikey Varas and his squad as they aim to go better than the quarterfinal spot they’ve reached in each of their last three U20 tournaments (2015, 2017, 2019) and they won Group B with three wins from three to reach the knockout rounds.
England, Brazil and hosts Argentina are among the favorites to win the tournament as Argentina stood in at the last minute to host the event after the tournament was moved from Indonesia.
Below is everything you need for the U20 World Cup.
Match 38: Tuesday, May 30: USA vs New Zealand – 1:30pm
Match 37: Tuesday, May 30: Uzbekistan vs Israel – 5pm
Match 40: Wednesday, May 31: Brazil vs Tunisia – 1:30pm
Match 42: Wednesday, May 31: Colombia vs Slovakia – 1:30pm
Match 39: Wednesday, May 31: England vs Italy – 5pm
Match 41: Wednesday, May 31: Argentina vs Nigeria – 5pm
Match 44: Thursday, June 1: Gambia vs Uruguay – 1:30pm
Match 43: Thursday, June 1: Ecuador vs South Korea – 5pm
Match 46: Saturday, June 3: Winner Match 37 vs Winner Match 40 – 1:30pm
Match 47: Saturday, June 3: Winner Match 42 vs Winner Match 39 – 5pm
Match 48: Sunday, June 4: Winner Match 43 vs Winner Match 32 – 1:30pm
Match 45: Sunday, June 4: Winner Match 38 vs Winner Match 44 – 5pm
Match 49: Thursday, June 8: Winner Match 45 vs Winner Match 46 – 1:30pm
Match 50: Thursday, June 8: Winner Match 47 vs Winner Match 48 – 5pm
Match 51: Sunday, June 11: Loser Match 49 vs Loser match 50 – 1:30pm
Match 52: Sunday, June 11: Winner Match 49 vs Winner mtahc 50 – 5pm
Group stage results
💣 ¡GOLAZO DE CARBONI!
⚽️ Valentin se tomó confianza, regateó y tiró con fuerza para lograr la remontada de la Albiceleste.
Saturday, May 20: Guatemala 0-1 New Zealand – 2pm
Saturday, May 20: Argentina 2-1 Uzbekistan – 5pm
Tuesday, May 23: Uzbekistan 2-2 New Zealand – 2pm
Tuesday, May 23: Argentina 3-0 Guatemala – 5pm
Friday, May 26: New Zealand 0-5 Argentina – 5pm
Friday, May 26: Uzbekistan 2-0 Guatemala – 5pm
Saturday, May 20: USA 1-0 Ecuador – 2pm (92nd minute winner from Jonathan Gomez)
Saturday, May 20: Fiji 0-4 Slovakia – 5pm
Tuesday, May 23: USA 3-0 Fiji – 2pm
Tuesday, May 23: Ecuador 2-1 Slovakia – 5pm
Friday, May 26: Slovakia 0-2 USA – 2pm
Friday, May 26: Ecuador 9-0 Fiji – 2pm
Sunday, May 21: Israel 1-2 Colombia – 2pm
Sunday, May 21: Senegal 0-1 Japan – 5pm
Wednesday, May 24: Senegal 1-1 Israel – 2pm
Wednesday, May 24: Japan 1-2 Colombia – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Japan 1-2 Israel – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Colombia 1-1 Senegal – 5pm
¡No se cansan de anotar👏!
Matheus Martins dispara con potencia y ya cae el sexto de @CBF_Futebol.
Sunday, May 21: Nigeria 2-1 Dominican Republic – 2pm
Sunday, May 21: Italy 3-2 Brazil – 5pm
Wednesday, May 24: Italy 0-2 Nigeria – 2pm
Wednesday, May 24: Brazil 6-0 Dominican Republic – 5pm
Saturday, May 27: Brazil 2-0 Nigeria – 2pm
Saturday, May 27: Dominican Republic 0-3 Italy – 2pm
Monday, May 22: England 1-0 Tunisia – 2pm
Monday, May 22: Uruguay 4-0 Iraq – 5pm
Thursday, May 25: Uruguay 2-3 England – 2pm
Thursday, May 25: Iraq 0-3 Tunisia – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: Iraq 0-0 England – 2pm
Sunday, May 28: Tunisia 0-1 Uruguay – 2pm
Monday, May 22: France 1-2 South Korea – 2pm
Monday, May 22: Gambia 2-1 Honduras – 5pm
Thursday, May 25: France 1-2 Gambia – 2pm
Thursday, May 25: South Korea 2-2 Honduras – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: South Korea 0-0 Gambia – 5pm
Sunday, May 28: Honduras 1-3 France – 5pm
Former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino has crossed the London divide and has agreed to join Chelsea as their new head coach.
Pochettino has signed a two-year contract (with the option of a third) at Stamford Bridge and the Argentine coach is back in the Premier League after a spell as Paris Saint-Germain manager where he won the Ligue 1 title during the 2021-22 season.
He brings Jesus Perez, Miguel d’Agostino, Toni Jimenez and Sebastiano Pochettino to Chelsea as his coaching staff.
Chelsea need structure and Pochettino and his staff provide it. They know the Premier League inside out and the work he did at Southampton and Tottenham are right up there among the best jobs in Premier League management over the last 10 years.
He is a coach who demands nothing but total commitment on the training pitch and loves to work with a small squad of players and develop young talent. So the first thing he will do is trim this squad and he now has a season without European competition to work them hard on the training ground and drill his ideology of intense, high-pressing football into the Chelsea squad.
Given the caliber of players that Chelsea have, and can buy, this is the chance Pochettino has been waiting for as his stint at PSG didn’t really work due to issues behind-the-scenes and with the playing squad.
Now we will get to see if Pochettino can take Chelsea’s expensively assembled squad and give them a structure to express themselves and get back to challenging for trophies and a top four finish (at the very least) in the Premier League.
At half time Leicester were winning against West Ham which meant Everton were being relegated for the first time in the PL era and their hopes of extending their incredible top-flight active streak to 70-straight seasons were in real danger. Goodison was full of boos and images of doom at the final whistle.
But Doucoure smashed home a stunning goal with just over 30 minutes to go to send Goodison Park wild as Bournemouth pushed hard for an equalizer late on but Everton held on and got the win they needed to stay up.
They were set up with five at the back from the start and it was too negative. Dyche got it right though. All they needed was one loose ball to drop to the right onrushing central midfielder and it did in the second half as Doucoure hammered home. It was a brilliant finish in what wasn’t a brilliant game. But Everton and Dyche don’t care. With loads of injuries they found a way to get it done and the history books show that Everton have still never been relegated from the Premier League and only Arsenal have a longer active top-flight streak as they will be playing at England’s top table next season, their 70th consecutive at the top level. Off the pitch there are financial issues to solve which could impact them next season but Dyche has done his job and if Everton are smart they should give him the tools to rip things up and rebuild the squad. Just staying up like this can’t happen again to Everton. They said that last season but look what happened. This time they have to make sure they are never in the relegation scrap again. A club of Everton’s size should never be in this situation.
🔵🚨 From here at Goodison Park, this is the moment Everton survived relegation from the Premier League on the final day of the season. #EFCpic.twitter.com/QrMequwsjz
BLOCK! What a block from Yerry Mina after Bournemouth made the most of some poor Everton defending. Excellent from David Brooks there.
You get the sense things were very defensive from the start from Sean Dyche as he stated with a back five.
CLOSE! Senesi squirms a shot wide of the far post after Bournemouth cause havoc in the box. The atmosphere is very, very quite here.
First, as it stands of today – Leicester City have gone 1-0 up against West Ham. With Everton drawing here at Goodison against Bournemouth, that means the Toffees are going down. Chants of “going down, going down!” from the Bournemouth fans in the away end. Everton’s fans are stunned.
BIG CHANCEEE! Idrissa Gana Gueye is played in but his shot is tipped over. Should be 1-0 to Everton. Moments later Travers tips away a shot from distance
A cross is whipped into the box but there isn’t an Everton player anywhere near it. Huge roars of discontent from the home fans. They want more attacking intent from their team.
The home fans are driving their team on. Everton seeing a lot of the ball but it is mostly from wide positions.
Demarai Gray with a half chance as he wriggles free but his shot/cross is cleared at the near post.
KICK OFF! We are underway and it has been a tense start. Everton’s fans are urging their team on but they’re in a back five. Bournemouth have had some good chances to whip it in from the right but the quality hasn’t been there on the final ball.
🔥🔥🔥 WHAT AN ATMOSPHERE! Welcome to Goodison Park. It is so loud here.
The nerves continue to build here at Goodison. 45 minutes until kick off. Everton fans just want to get this started. This has to be excruciating for them. Meanwhile in the away end the Bournemouth fans are having a lovely time in the sun. Completely opposite atmosphere.
As we sit in the press box in the main stand at Goodison, you can hear a wall of noise approaching the stadium from every angle. Great atmosphere building here.
Team news is out and there are two changes for Everton as Conor Coady comes in for the injured Nathan Patterson. Demarai Gray starts up top in place of the injured Dominic Calvert-Lewin. Looks like Coady is at right back and McNeil is at left back. Bournemouth are without captain and star goalkeeper Neto who misses out due to personal reasons.
Hello and welcome to Goodison Park, where the nerves are jangling, the sun is shining and the flares are plentiful! The equation is simple for Everton: win and they will stay up. Lose or draw and their safety is out of their hands. Get ready for an intense few hours.
😬🔵☀️Welcome to Goodison Park!
Where the nerves are jangling, the sun is shining and the flares are plentiful.
Everton have really been through it with injuries in recent weeks and the fact that Calvert-Lewin is once again struggling means that Dyche may play without a recognized striker on the final day. Defensively they have issues at full back but they have hung in there and the home crowd has inspired them on several occasions as they are within one win of safety.
Bournemouth goalkeeper Neto has been exceptional, so too has Dominic Solanke and Dango Ouattara at the other end of the pitch as there has been a really nice balance about the Cherries over the last few months as they stayed up without much stress in the end. In the reverse game in November Bournemouth beat Everton 3-0 to spark ugly scenes in the away end as the Everton fans turned on their players and demanded and were hugely disappointed with the display.
Everton team news, injuries, lineup
OUT: Seamus Coleman (hamstring), Dele Alli (groin), Ruben Vinagre (achilles), Andros Townsend (knee), Dominic Calvert-Lewin (thigh), Nathan Patterson (thigh), Tom Davies (thigh), Vitalii Mykolenko (thigh), Ben Godfrey (groin)
It has been a building-block season for Manchester United, who finished sixth last season. Manager Erik ten Hag can count this season as a success and a cup double is still possible if he can lead the Red Devils past neighbors Man City in the FA Cup Final.
Fulham can also call the season a success, finishing comfortably 10th in its first season back in the top flight
It’s difficult not to talk big picture after a Championship Sunday like this where the top four was sorted before the matchday began in England.
Manchester United is in as good shape as it’s been in some time because it had success this season while building upward from its foundation.
Yes, the club still has some older key pieces in Casemiro and Raphael Varane, but Erik ten Hag’s system looks ready for finer ingredients and the boss will now have a great idea of what pieces work and what pieces are for someone else’s project.
This was a successful year for Manchester United, the type that will make sure that success at Manchester United is measured in a relatively new but still very familiar way: by bigger ambition.
Manchester United vs Fulham player ratings: Stars of the Show
Midweek injuries to Antony and Luke Shaw will leave Ten Hag short on depth when he picks the team to face Fulham. Their statuses for the FA Cup final — Manchester United’s chance to deny rivals Manchester City a famed treble to match their own in 1999 — are very much up in the air and perhaps in doubt.
Despite being comfortably mid-table and facing zero threat of relegation, Fulham have continued to compete (and win) until the very end. Last weekend’s 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace was disappointing for how late Fulham conceded the equalizer, but it came on the back of two-goal victories over Leicester and Southampton, as well as single-goal defeats to Manchester City, Liverpool and Aston Villa. The Cottagers have played the PL’s best sides close and comfortably beaten the sides below in the table. Marco Silva’s side surprised the whole world this season.
Manchester United team news, injuries, lineup options
OUT: Lisandro Martinez (foot – out for season), Donny van de Beek (knee), Marcel Sabitzer (knee), Mason Greenwood (suspension – MORE), Phil Jones (knee), Antony (ankle)
🚨 Closing out our 2022/23 season…
The boss makes 6️⃣ changes from Thursday's win 👊#MUFC || #MUNFUL