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Raheem Sterling steps up Chelsea injury return ahead of hoped Borussia Dortmund comeback



(Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Raheem Sterling has taken one more step closer to returning to action for Chelsea following a hamstring injury sustained at the beginning of the month.

The 28-year-old was forced off during their 1-0 defeat to Manchester City on January 5 at Stamford Bridge after sustaining a hamstring strain.

Chelsea have been hit with 10 injuries over the course of the Christmas and New Year period, with the problems not letting up for Graham Potter until last week, which also saw Christian Pulisic suffer a knee injury in the Man City defeat in the capital.

Sterling hoped to be available to face Liverpool last weekend, a game that ended 0-0 at Anfield, but further scans revealed his time on the sidelines would be extended.

A return date against Borussia Dortmund has been targeted by Sterling. Chelsea travel to the Signal Iduna Park on February 15 for the first leg of their Round of 16 Champions League tie in Germany.

And Sterling has made his first steps of progress after Chelsea confirmed the England international had ventured out onto the Cobham training pitches for some individual work on Thursday.

“Raheem Sterling has taken part in some light individual training work on the grass as he ups his return from a hamstring injury,” it read on the official Chelsea website.

Potter will hope Sterling is available for selection in Dortmund but will not rush the forward back.

He could welcome back Reece James and Ben Chilwell against Fulham in the Premier League next Friday after the pair made their returns to training following injuries. Mateo Kovacic is also likely to be in contention after a calf injury.

Upon his training comeback, Chilwell told in-house media: “I’ve been working now for ten/eleven weeks to get back onto the grass.

“I’ve been back in training now for a few days, so I’m buzzing and really looking forward to getting back to the games and helping the team.

He added: “We’ve got a very important second half of the season with the league and the Champions League.

“So we’re really excited for that and hopefully we can have a very good second half of the season and a good end to the Champions League.”