TalkSPORT pundit Jamie O’Hara has encouraged the Premier League to postpone next weekend’s round of fixtures ahead of the World Cup. England’s injuries look to be adding up with only a few weeks to go until their first match.
Ben Chilwell became the latest star to pick up an injury on Wednesday as he was forced off with a hamstring problem during Chelsea’s win over Dinamo Zagreb. The defender’s absence will be a huge concern for Gareth Southgate who could already be without Kyle Walker and Reece James at the back.
Following the news of Chilwell’s injury, O’Hara told talkSPORT: “For England it’s a serious problem. Players are dropping like flies. We keep going on about it - the amount of fixtures they’re having to squeeze in before the World Cup starts. Big games as well but these games tonight (Wednesday) are meant to be played in December and they have had to play them all now, so the big players have had to play in these games to get the club through.
“Cancel the last round of Premier League games and give them a bit of breathing space. The Premier League should do it or the FA should get involved.”
Walker has been a regular for England in the past two tournaments and has earned 70 caps over the past eleven years, however the 32-year-old could be a huge loss for the Three Lions if he is to miss out with injury. The ex-Sheffield United and Spurs defender has played only one match since England’s 3-3 draw with Germany in September and has since undergone groin surgery, leaving him with an anxious wait to discover whether he will be available for the World Cup.
Man City also saw fellow international defender John Stones sidelined following the Germany clash and there was worries he would miss the winter tournament, however he has since returned to the side and started in City’s 1-0 win over Leicester at the weekend. Meanwhile, Kalvin Phillips is likely to be absent due to injury after making only three appearances since his summer move from Leeds United.