Saturday’s win at Stoke may not be forgotten in a while, but for the absent Gary Cahill, it was a more memorable day than for most.

The defender was due to figure at the Britannia Stadium, and travelled to the Potteries with his team-mates, only to receive a phone call from home that demanded his return south. Wife Gemma had gone into labour, and the 26-year-old would be by her side rather than that of Branislav Ivanovic at the centre of the Chelsea defence.

‘I got the call at about 4.30 on Saturday morning,’ he recalled. ‘We knew it was close but it was still early as the due date was February 7, but I got the call and that was that. I shot back down to London, sod’s law it was while I was away, but I got down there to be with my wife, Gemma, and my baby boy arrived at 1.50pm, so we could see the scores coming in on Saturday afternoon!’

The baby boy has been named Leo, and he joins older sister Freya as the newest member of the Cahill family.

‘Since then we’ve all gone back home on Sunday, and the whole experience was amazing,’ the defender said. ‘It’s my second child, and obviously it was a great result for Chelsea too so it was an unbelievable day and everyone is happy.

‘We all had Sunday off anyway as there were so many games lately. We’re now settled at home and I’m back in training and ready for Wednesday against Southampton.

‘The most important thing was that my little boy was all fine, that’s the case, and now we’re back to normal.’

Looking ahead at Stamford Bridge, Cahill knows we must emerge victorious against improving Southampton if we are to take advantage of recent good form on the road, which has taken us into third place in the Barclays Premier League.

‘We have to get the three points against Southampton, we should be full of confidence after the result at Stoke and now we have to switch our home form around,’ he urged.

‘I don’t see why we can’t do that, the lads are in good form and we look forward to the next game and getting the right result.’

Tickets for tomorrow night’s game are still available.

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