Match Preview: Everton vs. Chelsea
After a two week hiatus from club football, Chelsea will be making a trip to the Merseyside to face Everton at Goodison Park.
After a poor start to their Premier League defense, The Blues will be finally looking to get the season properly underway with three points against the side they beat 3-6 at the same venue last season.
Team News, Injuries and Suspensions
Chelsea- Ramires seems to have left behind his injury problems and should be fit to be in the reckoning. Mourinho, meanwhile, confirmed the unavailability of Oscar in his press conference. Thibaut Courtois, meanwhile, picked up an unfortunate ankle injury while training with Belgian National Team. The extent of the injury is unknown, but he may be missing 2-4 months of the season. John Terry is suspended.
Everton- The Toffees themselves have quite a few absentees in Darron Gibson with a Fractured Metatarsal, Tony Hibbert and Brendan Galloway with a Knee injury, Steven Pienaar with an injured hamstring, Tom Cleverley and Leighton Baines with leg and Ankle injuries respectively.
Chelsea- Things were beginning to head in the right direction after the win against West Brom. But all that optimism was shattered after Mourinho’s Chelsea lost only for the second time ever at home against Stoke. We can pretty much say that the international break couldn’t have come at a better time for the club.
The two-week break would have given the gaffer Jose Mourinho a lot of time to assess the mistakes that his team is making. So we should expect a motivated team with the desire which has been missing so far. A clean sheet will also be appreciated! Although, an injury to Thibaut Courtois is a major blow to our Premier League chances. Hopefully, Begovic steps up big time!
Everton- After an excellent 2013-14 campaign where the Toffees finished 5th, last season was a disappointment. An 11th place finish was a step back in the wrong direction. The start of this season has been average (although better than Chelsea) with 5 points from 4 games. Everton have managed to keep their star defender John Stones and have signed a couple of good players as well.
Key Player Battles
Hazard vs. Coleman- Last season’s Player of the Year, Eden Hazard has had a poor start to the campaign so far. But with two goals in two international matches, he has picked up some form. Seamus Coleman will have to be in his best to stifle the charismatic Belgian.
Pedro vs. Barry- Chelsea’s new solution to the Right Wing conundrum has had a great start to life at the Premier League. Gareth Barry will have to be on his heels to prevent Pedro from wreaking havoc.
Lennon vs. Azpilicueta/Ivanovic- It will be surprising if Ivanovic starts; but if he does, expect Lennon to shift to the left wing just to target Ivanovic, as the whole world is successfully doing. Otherwise, Azpilicueta will also find it a bit difficult to deal with the directness and pace of the Winger.
Last Five Meetings-
19 May 2013 Chelsea 2-1 Everton
14 Sep 2013 Everton 1-0 Chelsea
22 Feb 2014 Chelsea 1-0 Everton
30 Aug 2014 Everton 3-6 Chelsea
11 Feb 2015 Chelsea 1-0 Everton
Everton (4-2-3-1): Howard, Coleman, Stones, Jagielka, Barry, McCarthy, Besic, Kone, Barkley, Lennon, Lukaku
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Begovic, Ivanovic, Cahill, Zouma, Azpilicueta, Fabregas, Matic, Pedro, Oscar, Hazard, Costa
Everton 1-2 Chelsea
Time: 1145 GMT / 1715 IST
Venue: Goodison Park
Referee: Andre Marriner
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Edited By: Karan Dubey
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