Christopher Nkunku’s injury has disrupted the Blues more than many initially thought it would, and there are no signs of the Londoners’ struggles ending anytime soon.
The 25-year-old is out until December after undergoing surgery on a knee injury he sustained just days before the new season kicked off.
Nkunku played a key role in linking the play with Nicolas Jackson, lan Maatsen and Carney Chukwuemeka during pre-season – and Chelsea’s play has suffered without him.
When announcing his injury, Pochettino said: “We feel very sorry about him.
“He was very important for us. Now it’s about not thinking too much about the injuries and being positive about when he can be back with us as soon as possible.
The frustration was glaring on Pochettino’s face as he said the words, knowing that the player he had bestowed the No 10 role in pre-season – would not be back until December at the least.