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Kirby not available for the foreseeable future says Emma Hayes

Fran Kirby will not play for Chelsea until the cause of ongoing fatigue is found


Girls on the Ball

15 April 2022

Speaking to the press ahead of Sunday’s FA semi-final clash against Arsenal, Chelsea boss Emma Hayes gave an update on forward Fran Kirby

When asked whether Kirby would be available to play this weekend Hayes said “no, there’s no chance of her playing at the weekend.”

Hayes then went on to further explain Kirby’s prolonged absence from the Chelsea line-up.

“She’s been taking some time in the background, suffering with a lot of fatigue. I don’t have a definitive reason why that is. But we’re trying to get to the bottom of it and take the time we can to try and find the right solutions for Fran.

“This is something that’s been ongoing and unfortunately until we get to the bottom of it, Fran won’t be available for selection.”

When asked about Kirby’s overall wellbeing Hayes was quick to ascertain that Kirby’s mental and emotional health is just as important as her physical recovery.

“Forget the athlete, this is a human being who is struggling and we have to get to the bottom of that. I don’t think Fran will be available for club and country until that happens.

"We’re going through a process of elimination to try and determine why she’s struggling. From my perspective this isn’t the first time. It has been ongoing for a number of years and we need to give her the time to find the right support to come up with a diagnosis. The with a diagnosis you can come up with strategies.

"But all I know right now is that she’s not available for club or country and she won’t be for the foreseeable future.”

The 28-year-old has previously suffered with pericarditis, an inflammation of the fibrous sac surrounding the heart, which saw her unfortunately saw her side-lined for much of the 2019-20 season. Kirby recovered and made her way back to fitness and was instrumental in helping Chelsea win last year’s delayed FA Cup against Arsenal in December.

Chelsea will take on Arsenal at Meadow Park this Sunday, 17th April at 12:30pm (BST). Coverage will begin at 12:15pm for viewers in the UK. Please check local listings for coverage outside of the UK. The match will also be shown live on the FA player for some viewers abroad. The match will be available to listen to with full commentary on BBC 5 Live and talkSPORT.


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