BRO BLOW ARMANDO BROJA suffered a serious-looking injury as Chelsea were beaten by Aston Villa in a mid-season friendly.
The Blues striker was stretchered off in Abu Dhabi after crying out in pain having twisted his knee in the Villa penalty area as he challenged for the ball with Ezri Konsa.
John McGinn (L) scored the only goal as Aston Villa beat Chelsea
Armando Broja suffered a potentially serious injury during the loss
Broja was one of just a few senior players named in the young Chelsea side, who fell behind to a strong Villa after just seven minutes.
Ollie Watkins broke down the left and cut across to captain John McGinn who fired low past Marcus Bettinelli in the Chelsea goal.
Graham Potter’s youthful side looked to hit back through the exciting Omari Hutchinson.
The winger, who joined from Arsenal in the summer, was the most dangerous player of a Chelsea forward line which included Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Hutchinson saw one low effort held by Robin Olsen in goal, before he drove in from the right and bent a fine effort onto the outside of the bar.
The game was then marred for the rest of the evening as Broja went down with a cry of agony.
Konsa and Olsen immediately signalled for medical staff to rush on and Broja was down for a long period before being lifted onto the stretcher.
Broja has one goal and one assists in 12 Premier League appearances so far this season.
Any long term injury to the Albanian will leave boss Potter with just one senior striker, Pierre-Emerick Aybameyang, in his squad.
Aubameyang has just one Premier League goal in six appearances since his move from Barcelona, while the former Arsenal man has scored twice in the Champions League this season.
The blow only adds to an already hefty injury list for Potter. Watching in the stands in Abu Dhabi but out through injury were Reece James, Ben Chilwell, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Carney Chuckwuemeka, N’Golo Kante, Kepa Arrizabalaga and Wesley Fofana.
Furthermore, Trevoh Chalobah was set to start the game before he was replaced by Alfie Gilchrist shortly before kick-off, though it is not clear whether that was due to injury.