Yeah, it was a crappy new year start after that 5-3 drumming at the hands of Spurs for Chelsea and fans, but with 10 days of gap between the next PL fixture, Jose Mourinho should look to rest his first team players ahead of the FA Cup game against Watford.
FA Cup is an interesting trophy to play for, as it is not so irrelevant as Capital One Cup but neither as important as a Premier League or Champions League trophy. For the last decade or so, we have been the king of this competition and Mourinho would look to continue that, coming up against Watford tomorrow.
A time for our back-ups to show their class? I certainly hope so! And this is how I expect the Portuguese to start tomorrow:
GK – PETR CECH
Courtois suffered a small injury on his hand in the last game against Spurs, but nevertheless, Cech would be a preferred starter in this fixture ahead of the Belgian.
CB – KURT ZOUMA and GARY CAHILL
I pondered a lot on the various combinations that we could use going into this fixture and this one makes the most sense.
John Terry needs rest considering his age; and Ivanovic has been playing regularly since.. forever! Kurt Zouma is set to start as a CB tomorrow and it should/would be Gary Cahill to partner him at defense. Time to lose the hangover Gary!
LB – FILIPE LUIS
He certainly starts at the LB spot to provide the width in breaking down a resilient Watford defense, who are most likely to sit back and absorb the pressure.
RB – CESAR AZPILICUETA
Azpi looks the most obvious choice at RB position, as Mourinho would avoid starting Andreas Christensen or Ake against a tough Championship side.
CM – JOHN OBI MIKEL and RAMIRES
I hope Mourinho gives rest to Matic and Fabregas for this fixture. Mikel and Ramires were good enough against a team like Man City last season. There isn’t any reason why they can’t perform well against a Championship side!
LW – ANDRE SCHURRLE
Eden Hazard was the sole bright spot in our thrashing at New Year and about this time he gets rest. Andre Schurrle better grab this golden opportunity tomorrow!
RW – MOHAMMED SALAH
If he doesn’t perform well tomorrow, he is surely leaving this January transfer window on a loan/permanent deal.
CAM – OSCAR
Oscar is the most benched of all our first team midfielders. The Brazilian is probably suffering from his customary drop in form after the Christmas season. Last season this continued till April, this season we hope it doesn’ t extend that long.
STRIKER – LOIC REMY
‘Tis about time the Frenchman gets a look at the Striking position! Loic Remy, since joining the Blues, has struggled for playing time and this weekend is the best opportunity for Mourinho to provide him that.
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Edited By: Harshal Ahire