Christian Pulisic was confirmed to have contracted Covid-19 by Blues boss Thomas Tuchel in a press conference on Friday, with the 22-year-old now having to oversee a period of self-isolation ahead of this weekend’s clash with Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium.
Pulisic revealed the news with a written statement on Instagram, and is currently asymptomatic as things stand.
He wrote: “Hi all, Unfortunately I tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this week. Thankfully I’m fully vaccinated and I have no symptoms so far.
“Can’t wait to get back in action! Thank you for your support.”
Pulisic is just one of a number of players who have recently tested positive in the Premier League, after Chelsea’s opposition for Sunday, Arsenal, had four players unavailable for their first game of the season, including noticeable absences Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette.
With that in mind, Tuchel believes Covid could damage football again at a later stage, but has urged his players to listen to the recommendations from the medical department about vaccinations and to be responsible for their actions.
“I think it is possible [Covid could impact football again] but that is only my personal belief,” he said, in the press conference on Friday.
“This is possible any time that this virus comes back and circulates, spreads with any variations and harms society and social life.
“I think that I am not in the role to tell my players and recommend strongly to my players to get vaccinated. I am vaccinated twice. A lot of my players are vaccinated twice. Christian is also.
“But this is clearly the recommendation from the doctors and from the medical department and they are in charge of that.
“I am not in fear but I am well aware of the risks and the situation we still live in and we have to be careful and we have to be responsible and this is what we do here in Cobham every day and in daily life.”
Chelsea will travel to the Emirates without Pulisic on Sunday, but the Blues will still be more than confident that they can get three points from a Gunners side who struggled against Brentford on the opening day.