Chelsea fans fume at 'shambolic' pitch as injured Christopher Nkunku huge doubt for Premier League opener vs Liverpool | The Sun

CHELSEA fans lambasted the state of the "shambolic" pitch in Chicago with Christopher Nkunku a major doubt for their Premier League opener against Liverpool.

The Blues faced Borussia Dortmund in their final pre-season friendly at Soldier Field last night.

But despite a late equaliser from Mason Burstow to rescue a 1-1 draw, the game was overshadowed by new star signing Nkunku limping off.

The French attacker, who joined for £52million from RB Leipzig, had enjoyed a stunning pre-season under Mauricio Pochettino with three goals in four games.

But with 20 minutes on the clock, he got his leg caught in the turf when battling Mats Hummels for possession and crumpled to the floor in pain clutching his knee.

Soldier Field has staged concerts for Ed Sheeran, Beyonce and Taylor Swift in the last month – and the playing surface was noticeably bobbly from the outset.


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So when exciting wideman Nkunku hobbled off and was replaced by Mykhailo Mudryl with a week-and-a-half until the Blues host Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on August 13, supporters let rip at the pitch.

One said: "Awkward contact but I don't care, I’m still blaming the pitch. It’s shambolic."

Another wrote: "This pitch is an actual disgrace."

A third added: "Why are we playing on this awful pitch I hope Nkunku’s injury is not too bad."

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A fourth commented: "We finally see a bit of what Nkunku and Nicholas Jackson can do with their link up only for NKUNKU TO GET INJURED ON THIS WARZONE OF A PITCH!!! I am p***ed, we play Liverpool in 10 DAYS!"

A fifth fumed: "It was good while it lasted. See you next year Nkunku. This pitch is disgusting."

And a final user joked: "Curse everyone at that concert who ruined the pitch."

Nkunku was spotted walking on the pitch after full-time without a brace, giving Chelsea fans hope there is no long-term damage done.

Poch also tried to alleviate fears with an update – and refused to slam the dodgy surface for the injury.

The Argentine boss said: "I don't want to complain.

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"We took some risks because the pitch is not perfect because the facilities are used for a different sport. We won't blame the pitch for the injury though. For me, it was bad luck.

"That is sometimes the risk of the tour. But I think it was a little bit unlucky the situation. We can't complain about the pitch.

"The doctors are checking him and I hope it is not a big issue. He fell in the action which was maybe a penalty and he feels something in his knee but we hope it is nothing big.

"We hope he can be back quickly with the team. We need a few days to assess him."

Chelsea played virtually a full-strength XI against Dortmund as Reece James wore the armband and Ben Chilwell started at left-back while Jackson led the line.

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Poch's side won three and drew two of their five friendlies in the United States and will now return to Cobham for their final preparations ahead of the new season.

The way the fixtures have fallen means they will only need to leave London TWICE before their away trip to Newcastle on November 25 – for games at Bournemouth and Burnley.

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