Frank Lampard has revealed that Olivier Giroud didn’t start against Manchester United because the striker did not feel fully fit.
Michy Batshuayi struggled in the absence of the injured Tammy Abraham before being replaced by Giroud in the second half.
Giroud was expected to leave the club last month but a proposed move to Inter Milan failed to materialise.
And Blues boss Lampard has admitted recent events have taken their toll on the Frenchman.
“He had a very difficult December. It was a difficult position for a player to be in,” Lampard said at a press conference on Friday.
“When I spoke to him just before the break he said himself that he needed a few weeks to get properly fit.
“That’s why he wasn’t really available to start against Manchester United. But the way he’s worked this week, he’s available to start, and he needs to keep doing what he’s doing.”
Abraham returned to training this week and Chelsea are hoping that their top scorer will be available for Saturday’s derby against Tottenham.
Lampard explained: “Tammy is in the squad but I will have to make a decision on him.
“He’s trained the past few days at probably around 70%, so we will have to assess him.”