Hull City vs Chelsea: Match Preview
Chelsea travel to the KC Stadium in search of a win after a hugely disappointing home draw against Southampton last weekend, as Chelsea failed to extend the gap over Manchester City to eight points with a game in hand.
TEAM NEWS, INJURY UPDATES AND SUSPENSIONS
John Obi Mikel is still out with a knee injury, and is unavailable for selection on Sunday. Rest of the players appear fit and ready to play. Diego Costa will spearhead the attack, after scoring a much-needed goal against Southampton, after a seven-match drought. Eden Hazard and Willian in the flanks, and Oscar operating behind the striker. Fabregas and Matic will occupy central midfield. Jose Mourinho seems to be keeping faith with Gary Cahill after Cahill endured a stuttering period of form. Ivanovic and Azpilicueta will be the full backs as usual. Petr Cech is just 3 clean sheets away from setting a new record for the highest number of clean sheets in the Premier League, so it will be interesting to see if Mourinho starts Cech, considering this might be his last season in the Premier League, or does he continue with Courtois.
Nikica Jelavic, Robbie Brady, James Chester and Robert Snodgrass remain long-term absentees. Mohamed Diame and Rosenoir are expected to be fit for the clash against Chelsea. Tom Huddlestone will miss the match through suspension. N’Doye will lead the line, supported by Aluko and Robertson. Ramirez, Jake Livermore will be joined by Meyler in midfield in the absence of Huddlestone. Micheal Dawson, Bruce, McShane and Elmohamady will make up the back four. McGregor will keep for the Tigers.
Chelsea have not looked their self since they stepped on the field against PSG. After a very disappointing draw against Southampton, Chelsea will look to find their mojo back, with a win against Hull City. Although Chelsea do have a six point lead over second placed Manchester City, with a game in hand, Chelsea will know that with matches against Manchester United, Arsenal and Liverpool left, these matches are a must win.
Hull City are just three points away from the relegation zone, and will know a loss might potentially throw them directly in the drop zone. Already tangled in a relegation battle with the likes of Aston Villa, Sunderland, Burnley, QPR and Leicester, Hull City manager Steve Bruce knows that finding form immediately is imperative.
Eden Hazard has scored in his last two matches against Hull City. Hull City have lost one of their last five home matches.
LAST 5 PREMIER LEAGUE MEETINGS
Chelsea 2-0 Hull City 13/12/2014
Hull City 0-2 Chelsea 11/01/2014
Chelsea 2-0 Hull City 18/08/2013
Hull City 1-1 Chelsea 02/02/2010
Chelsea 2-1 Hull City 15/08/2009
PREDICTED STARTING LINE UPS
Hull City: McGregor (GK), McShane, Dawson (C), Bruce, Elmohamady, Livermore, Meyler, Ramirez, Aluko, Robertson, N’Doye.
Chelsea: Courtois (GK), Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry (C), Azpilicueta, Matic, Fabregas, Hazard, Oscar, Willian, Costa.
Hull City 0-2 Chelsea
Time: 1600 GMT / 2130 IST
Venue: KC Stadium
Referee: Michael Oliver
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Edited By: Ankur Bhatt