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Southampton defender Kyle Walker-Peters could be out for several weeks, manager Ralph Hasenhuttl confirmed.
The hamstring problem on the right back leaves Hasenhuttl with a defensive headache ahead of Chelsea’s visit.
Walker-Peters was expelled during the Premier League defeat to Wolves, who just returned from a thigh injury.
Hasenhuttl is now concerned about the right-back, as midfielder James Ward-Prowse fell defensively during the latter stages of Sunday.
Yan Valery and Jake Vokins were allowed out on loan, so the Saints don’t have much experience in covering, with 20-year-old Kayne Ramsay another potential option rather than asking Jan Bednarek or Jack Stephens to move in.
“I’m still not very happy with what’s going on with our injuries,” Hasenhuttl said.
“With Kyle Walker-Peters we have another guy who is definitely out of the game, maybe for a few weeks.
“That definitely hurts us because he was important when we had a good run and played good games.
“This is the endless story of this season. We always have problems with injuries.
“We have Ibra (Diallo), Theo Walcott also (out), so we miss three important players, but we have to trust the players we have.”
Southampton host Chelsea for the start of Saturday at 12.30pm as they look to stop a six-game losing streak in the league that has seen them slide down the table.
HasenhuttlHowever, it focuses on the challenges they face, rather than what went wrong in recent weeks.
“It’s more important to focus on what we still have influence on,” the Saints coach said.
“The next game is a very difficult challenge and we want to use all our energy on that to get a good performance.
“We have shown this season what we can do when we play good football and there will come a time when things may be changing a bit for us.
“In the last weeks, everything was very against us, but we have to accept this, and now we look forward.”
Hasenhuttl has connections to Tuchel
New Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel will be ready to extend his impressive start, with five wins and a six-game draw in charge so far since replacing Frank Lampard.
Hasenhuttl has known the German well from his time in the Bundesliga, and Blues assistant coach Zsolt Low also worked alongside the Austrian at RB Leipzig.
“It’s obvious that he (Tuchel) knows what he’s doing and he’s a coach who immediately brings his game plan to a team,” Hasenhuttl said.
“You can see his Chelsea development in the short time he’s there, you can see his message.
“Now they play a completely different style of football and this is a sign that a coach has a clear plan and knows what to do.”
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Hungarian Low teamed up with Tuchel at Paris St Germain and his insider on how Hasenhuttl likes teaming up adds another factor to Saturday’s encounter at St Mary’s.
“He knows the way we play very well and that doesn’t make it easier for us, but the challenges you always have in the Premier League are not easy,” Hasenhuttl said.
“Just focus on what you can do best and look to have a perfect day with our team.”
READ MORE: Chelsea duo becomes ‘expendable’ for Tuchel