January 2, 2019 / 7:23 AM / 21 days ago

Chelsea's Sarri rules out signing striker, targets winger

Soccer Football - Premier League - Crystal Palace v Chelsea - Selhurst Park, London, Britain - December 30, 2018 Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri gives instructions to Eden Hazard REUTERS/David Klein

(Reuters) - Striker Olivier Giroud’s ankle injury will not force Chelsea’s hand in the January transfer window but the club could explore the possibility of signing a winger, manager Maurizio Sarri has said.

No return date was set for Giroud’s return after he twisted his ankle against Crystal Palace last weekend.

Sarri remains pleased with his options up front in Alvaro Morata and Eden Hazard.

“We have Morata and Hazard can play very well in this position as we have seen in the last matches,” he told reporters.

“So I think at the moment I don’t need another striker.”

Sarri, however, has a selection headache on the flanks, with Pedro and Callum Hudson-Odoi unavailable due to hamstring injuries.

Versatile English midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek is also struggling with a back problem and is a doubt for Chelsea’s home league meeting with Southampton on Wednesday.

“Now we are in trouble with Pedro out, Hudson-Odoi out and Loftus-Cheek is a midfielder but can play as a winger in two-three matches,” Sarri added.

“So I have options for the striker, but at the moment I have no option for the wingers.”

Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly

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