Guus Hiddink hopes that the injuries sustained by Diego Costa and Eden Hazard during Chelsea's Champions League last-16 second-leg defeat to Paris Saint-Germain do not keep the duo sidelined for any significant length of time. Both players were forced to come off in the second half at Stamford Bridge as close-range efforts from Adrien Rabiot and Zlatan Ibrahimovic sent the runaway Ligue 1 leaders through to the last eight 4-2 on aggregate.
Costa missed the 1-1 Premier League draw against Stoke City on 5 March due to a minor tendon injury, but impressed after returning to the starting lineup. The Spanish international's left-footed strike after 26 minutes gave Chelsea real hope of avenging their extra-time defeat to PSG at the same stage last season, although his subsequent withdrawal seemed to deflate the home side and they conceded a decisive second goal just minutes later.
As if that was not quite bad enough, Hiddink was also forced to substitute Hazard before full-time. The attacking midfielder was seen to be limping shortly after the break, but attempted to play on before signalling to the bench that he too could not continue. Such a double injury blow will come as a huge concern ahead of the FA Cup quarter-final clash with Everton at Goodison Park this weekend, a match that represents Chelsea's final chance to salvage any silverware from a hugely difficult campaign.
When asked to confirm if the issues sustained by Costa and Hazard were short or longer term, Hiddink told BT Sport: "We'll see tomorrow. I hope it will not be long-term for Diego. But I must pay my respect to him because he desperately wanted to play. It would have been better even if he would not have started but he wanted to play in this very good game."
Pressed to establish exactly what was troubling Costa, the manager added: "Yes, it's a little bit on his tendon. In his hip, in the upper leg.
"He [Costa] made a beautiful goal, but we knew he was not totally fit. He desperately wanted to play. I must respect that he did what he could and he was not fully fit."