Chelsea face a tricky test when they meet Newcastle this Saturday at Stamford Bridge.
The Blues enter the fixture on the back of an away league win against Manchester City and Newcastle with a humiliating derby defeat to Sunderland, the former being a special victory for a confident Chelsea side where the spirits are definitely running high.
Newcastle United will be gutted after losing the derby which meant that they have lost against Sunderland three times in a row now and it is certainly not inspiring knowing that they will be facing a spirited Chelsea side.
Mourinho’s men are sitting in third position on the Premier League table only two points adrift of table-toppers Arsenal and Newcastle are eight as they continue to hunt for a place in Europe.
Newcastle beat Chelsea in the reverse fixture at St. James’ Park and the Magpies can take heart from this fact.
With Blues’ manager labeling them as “Little horses who need milk” in the title race, what seems to be an attempt to take some pressure of his team whom the footballing world definitely seem to look at as title contenders.
Magpies’ boss Alan Pardew on the other hand insisted that their team is in a good shape ahead of this fixture and has alerted them of the fact Chelsea have kept only 2 clean sheets out of the last 9 games at home.
Last five games (All Competitions)
Manchester City 0-1 Chelsea (PL)
Chelsea 0-0 West Ham United (PL)
Chelsea 3-1 Manchester United (PL)
Hull City 0-2 Chelsea (PL)
Derby County 0-2 Chelsea (FAC)
Newcastle United 0-3 Sunderland (PL)
Norwich City 0-0 Newcastle United (PL)
West Ham United 1-3 Newcastle United (PL)
Newcastle United 0-2 Manchester City (PL)
Newcastle United 1-2 Cardiff City (FAC)
Mourinho guaranteed that winter signing Mohammad Salah could make his debut while Fernando Torres who started training again after recovering from a knee injury will play no part in this fixture.
Mikel, Matic, Luiz, Lampard are all in contention for the two defensive midfield places and Samuel Eto’o might get the nod to lead the line against the Magpies.
Newcastle United miss out on anyone who can pose some threat to the Blues either due to suspension or injuries. Loic Remy, their leading goalscorer, is suspended for this match while Cisse, Gouffran, Tiote, Coloccini, Obertran and Ryan Taylor remain on the sidelines.
* Chelsea are unbeaten in 21 home games – 10 more than any other side.
*Chelsea have the best defensive record in the league this season and have conceded just two goals in their last ten games in all competitions.
* Chelsea have won 6 of their last 8 home matches against middle-third teams by at least two goals.
* Newcastle have failed to score in five of their last six matches.
* Newcastle have drawn just one of their last 13 away matches.
Time: 15:00 GMT
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Referee: Howard Webb
Author’s Verdict: Chelsea 3-1 Newcastle