Chelsea manager Luiz Felipe Scolari expects to be without summer signing Jose Bosingwa for the beginning of the new Premier League season.
The defender, who joined Chelsea from Porto over the summer, has been ruled out for three weeks with a thigh injury.
Bosingwa is expected to be first choice right-back at Stamford Bridge this season, but Scolari is set to be without the 25-year-old when the Blues kick-off against Portsmouth on 16th August.
The Portugal international has returned from Chelsea's pre-season tour of Asia and Russia after being diagnosed with a tear in his upper thigh and Scolari is preparing for the absence.
"He is out for two weeks minimum for treatment and he won't be able to play for three weeks," said Scolari. "At the moment, he is out of the first game against Portsmouth."
But Scolari, who officially took over in West London at the beginning of July, is confident the likes of Paulo Ferreira and Michael Essien can fill in after the duo performed well in Saturday's 7-0 friendly victory over Chengdu Blades.
"I have players who can cover," Scolari continued.
"I played with Paulo, Essien also played there for 30 minutes, and they both played very well so it is not a problem for us."
Meanwhile, Scolari has defended Chelsea's globetrotting pre-season tour and claims it is the ideal way to get to know his inherited squad.
"Because I am new to Chelsea I need to learn about my players. I have an idea about my players, but I need to work everyday with them to learn more," added Scolari.
"I don't want to play against strong teams because my players are not fully match fit."