Just days after their draw at Leicester, Chelsea have embarked on a 6,000 mile round trip to America to take part in a one-off friendly match against the New England Revolution, in a decision largely condemned by Maurizio Sarri, who still has the pressing matter of guiding Chelsea to a first European title in six years.

The game is being billed as the “Final Whistle on Hate”, a key part of the “Say no to anti-Semitism” campaign. But despite the context in which the fixture is being played there is certainly no escaping the impractical nature of travelling such a distance just to play a friendly which will more than likely feature an array of youth team players.

The use of said academy players is a deliberate damage limitation policy by Sarri, as he seeks to preserve the fitness of a squad ravaged by injury in recent weeks.

Young full-back Reece James, who excelled on loan at Wigan, is in line for a start while fellow academy graduates Marc Guehi, Trevor Chalobah and Connor Gallagher have also travelled with the first team.