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Chelsea’s Mateo Kovacic tests COVID-19 positive, says Tuchel


Chelsea midfielder Mateo Kovacic is isolating after testing positive for COVID-19 ahead of its final Champions League group game at Zenit St Petersburg, manager Thomas Tuchel said on Tuesday.

The Croatian, who has five league assists, was back in contention for the first time since October after an injury ruled him out of Chelsea’s last eight games in all competitions.

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“Mateo was in training yesterday with a big smile and was pure pleasure to have him back, but he tested positive today for COVID-19 and is isolating,” Tuchel told reporters ahead of Wednesday’s game.

Chelsea has already qualified for the Champions League’s knockout stages and is tied on 12 points with Juventus at the top of Group H. The London club can finish as group leader if it matches or betters Juventus’ result against Malmo.

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