Chelsea will not sign Gonzalo Higuain in time for the striker to be eligible to play against Tottenham on Thursday night, according to reports.
The London rivals are set to go head-to-head in the EFL Cup semi-final second leg at Stamford Bridge, with Spurs leading 1-0 after the first leg thanks to Harry Kane’s penalty.
Tottenham will be without Kane, Son Heung-min and Dele Alli on Thursday, so Fernando Llorente is likely to lead the line again – unless Lucas Moura returns early from a knee injury.
Thankfully for Spurs, Chelsea have striker issues of their own. Maurizio Sarri has been playing Eden Hazard in a ‘False 9’ role of late, preferring the Belgian to centre forwards Olivier Giroud and Alvaro Morata.
The Blues were toothless up front in their 2-0 defeat to Arsenal on Saturday. To solve that problem, they are reportedly set to sign Higuain on loan from Juventus for the remainder of the season.
But unless they confirm his arrival by noon on Wednesday, the Argentinian will not be available for Thursday’s match. Higuain is unlikely to be registered in time, according to Sky Italia (via Calcio Mercato).
The news is of the welcome variety for Tottenham, who will struggle to find goals themselves and may rely on simply holding on to their lead to reach the final.