Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has confirmed, at a press conference covered by the club's official Twitter account, that goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has suffered a knee injury that needs surgery and could be out for a 'long, long time', but is hoping it won't be too serious an issue.
The Blues boss declined to put an exact timescale on the recovery over the Belgian but seemed confident in the ability of Asmir Begovic to take his place in the starting XI for the foreseeable future, but didn't comment on how Courtois picked up his injury.
"It's a big blow but you will not see me next week speaking about Thibaut because I never do when a player is injured.
"It is not easy to have the best goalkeeper in the world injured but it is easy to have one of the best goalkeepers to play.
"We have a top goalkeeper and Begovic will play."
Chelsea are looking to kick-start their season after only managing to pick up four points from their opening four games but despite the poor return from the defending champions, which sees them eight points behind league leaders Manchester City at this early stage of the season, Mourinho seems happy with the performance level his side has produced thus far.
He added: "Every result we got was less than we did to get the better result. Even against West Bromwich where we won, the 3-2 victory looks a very tight match, but it wasn't. The result should be completely different and I say the same in the defeats against City and Palace and in the draw against Swansea. Circumstances in the match give us results worse than performances."
Mourinho also confirmed that Oscar will be absent through injury for this weekend's trip to Goodison Park but could be in contention for the Champions League tie with Maccabi Tel Aviv or for next week's Premier League clash against Arsenal at Stamford Bridge.
Given it was the first press conference after the transfer window he was also asked about John Stones, which he refused to comment on, but offered some insight into how the signing of defender Papy Djilobodji came about.
"[He] Was not my choice but it was the choice of somebody I trust completely, which is the same," he said.
"The person that told me Djilobodji could be a fantastic squad player for us is the same one who said Zouma could be fantastic."