Roberto De Zerbi reveals expected return date for injured pair - 'We are suffering without'
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Albion’s injury crisis continued this weekened, with Ansu Fati, Tariq Lamptey, Enciso, Welbeck, Solly March and Adam Webster all missing the trip to Chelsea on Sunday (December 3. Lewis Dunk and Mahmoud Dahoud are also missing through suspension.
Dunk, Evan Ferguson, Kaoru Mitoma and James Milner have all missed games with injuries in recent weeks.
Paraguay teenager Enciso has been out since suffering a meniscus cartilage injury in his knee in training after the 4-1 win at Wolves in August.
Before travelling to Chelsea, De Zerbi was asked if the 19-year-old – who scored a stunning winner at Stamford Bridge last season – would play again this calendar year.
"He's recovering well, I hope and think,” the Italian replied.
"But I think no, it's difficult for him to play this year. I hope to watch him on the pitch from January.”
De Zerbi also provided an update on Welbeck, who has been missing with a hamstring problem suffered during the defeat at Manchester City on October 21 – the same day Solly March sustained a serious knee injury.
De Zerbi said: “I think Welbeck can play before the end of the year. He’s very important for us. We are suffering playing without Danny Welbeck.”
Brighton travel to west London looking for their third successive win, in all competitions, following victories over Nottingham Forest and AEK Athens – despite their depleted squad.
De Zerbi said: "We are thinking about Chelsea. We forgot the game in Greece. We have to play better to make points.
"I must admit it's a very tough period. But we can and we must transform problems into opportunities.
"We can't think about injuries or how many players we lost. We have to be focused on the game.
"We have enough to try to get the win. It’s a difficult game but it's a part of life, a part of football to play in difficulty. We can become better if we accept this moment – better players, coaches and men.”