The Chelsea football manager Carlo Ancelotti has admitted that Frank Lampard will miss his side's crucial Premier League London derby at Tottenham this weekend.
Lampard has been sidelined for three months after hernia surgery and a groin injury, but it was suggested this week that he would feature at White Hart Lane after returning to training.
However, Ancelotti believes Lampard needs at least one practice match before he is ready for the demands of the Premier League, so he will once again be without the England midfielder for a match his team desperately need to win.
The out-of-sorts Blues have slipped to third in the table after taking just five points from their last six matches and another loss to Spurs would only increase the pressure on Ancelotti.
Instead, Ancelotti hopes his star midfielder will prove his fitness in a friendly this week and then return to action when Manchester United visit Stamford Bridge next weekend.