Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois will be out for “quite a long time” after suffering a knee injury in training, manager Jose Mourinho has announced.
The Premier League champions will first be without the Belgium goalkeeper for Saturday’s match at Everton after Courtois suffered the injury in training.
“Courtois was injured in a training session with the goalkeepers and I cannot tell you much, but I can tell you that he needs surgery in his right knee,” Mourinho said.
“As a consequence of that he will be out for quite a long time. I cannot be at this moment more specific about the injury or the time he will be out.”
It is another blow for the Blues, who have four points from their opening four games and sit eight points behind leaders Manchester City.
Asmir Begovic will deputise for Courtois, who suffered the injury on Wednesday in circumstances Mourinho was not familiar with, as it happened during a goalkeeper-specific session.
Mourinho expected to receive an update on the prognosis for Courtois later on Friday.
“In this moment we lose Courtois for a long, long time – I hope it’s not long, long, just long,” added Mourinho, who will have Jamal Blackman on the bench.
Oscar remains out with an undisclosed injury, but could return to contention for next Wednesday’s Champions League campaign opener at home to Maccabi Tel Aviv or the following Saturday against Arsenal.
“Almost there,” said Mourinho on the Brazil playmaker.
Mourinho declined to discuss Chelsea’s transfer window activity, when Everton rebuffed offers for defender John Stones.
“The transfer window is closed. I have no more comments. I have nothing to say,” Mourinho said.
“What (Everton boss Roberto) Martinez says for me means nothing. I don’t comment.
“John Stones, I expect him to play tomorrow with (Phil) Jagielka, because it’s the normal two central defenders that play for Everton.”
Asked if he would shake hands with Martinez at Goodison Park, Mourinho said: “You think that’s important? I don’t think it’s important.”
Instead of Stones, Chelsea signed Papy Djilobodji on a recommendation.
Mourinho said: “It was not my choice. It was the choice of somebody I trust completely.
“I don’t know every player. My job doesn’t allow me to travel, doesn’t allow me to spend hours and hours watching players.
“And in some moments of the market, under certain circumstances are moments where you have to trust or not the people that you work with.
“In my case I trust, because the same person that told me that Djilobodji can be a good squad player for us, was the same person who told me (about Kurt) Zouma.”