Nicolas Jackson to miss Chelsea vs Liverpool game despite Mauricio Pochettino's push for a swift return

Nicolas Jackson has scored seven goals for Chelsea and Mauricio Pochettino was hoping to have him involved at Anfield.
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There is little chance Chelsea striker Nicolas Jackson will make a rapid return to the team this evening after arriving back in Dakar with the rest of the Senegal squad late last night. 

Teranga Lions manager Aliou Cisse has insisted that every member of the team including the backroom staff return to Dakar together before players can then head off to their respective clubs, making the chance of Jackson returning to the UK in time for the Liverpool kick-off almost impossible.

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As of midday UK time on Wednesday the 31st of January, the 22-year-old striker was still in Dakar with sources in the Senegalese capital saying he would leave for London later in the day. 

Chelsea have been exploring the logistics involved with getting the striker back following Senegal's last-16 exit on Monday, with Mauricio Pochettino ready to involve him if possible in a bid to boost their chances against the league leaders.

The Chelsea boss told the press he wasn't entirely ruling out his main striker when asked if he could be involved tonight. Pochettino said: "We are waiting. All I can say is that maybe he will be there. The other day Ghana lost and were out and Inaki Williams arrived a few hours before and played in the second half to beat Barcelona in the Copa del Rey. Why can't Jackson arrive and score the winning goal?" 

Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana flew back from the tournament in Ivory Coast on Monday and is set to play in Thursday's Premier League clash with Wolves at Molineux even though his country crashed out 48 hours before Jackson's Senegal and United don't play till Thursday night. 

Jackson's absence highlights his importance

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The Chelsea striker has benefited from being away as his absence has further highlighted his skill and growing importance to the Chelsea team. Only Cole Palmer has scored more goals than Jackson's eight, but it is his ability to drag defenders out of position and the unending running at the opposition backline that has made him such a big miss since he left for the AFCON

Pochettino's call to have him involved straight away also highlights how much the manager values his contribution and technical ability despite a challenging start to life as Chelsea's main striker. Chelsea will travel to Anfield tonight hoping for a first win in the last seven meetings.