Predicted 4-3-3 Chelsea XI to face Fulham in the Premier League
Chelsea were well-below par in that 3-1 defeat at the hands of Spurs last week and the Blues will be looking to get back to winning ways when they play host to another London rival Fulham on Sunday.
Maurizio Sarri’s men slipped to 4th in the Premier League standings as a result of the defeat last week and the Blues will be under pressure to claim all three points to keep within striking distance of table-toppers Manchester City.
Fulham turned their fortunes around with a positive start to life under Claudio Ranieri as the Cottagers beat Southampton 3-2 in the Premier League last week but they will be up against it when they face Chelsea this week.
Eden Hazard did not play in the Europa League game on Thursday night but is likely to push for a return having recovered from an ankle injury while Victor Moses is struggling with a lower back injury and is unlikely to feature on Sunday.
Marko van Ginkel is a long-term absentee due to a cruciate ligament injury. Sarri is likely to make quite a few changes to the team that played PAOK in the Europa League on Thursday.
Manager: Maurizio Sarri
1. Kepa Arrizabalaga (GK)
The Spaniard had a horrible outing against Spurs and he will be expected to do a lot better between the sticks on Sunday.
2. Cesar Azpilicueta (RB)
The Spaniard bagged an assist against Spurs but didn’t have the best of days and Chelsea will need him to be at the top of his game against Fulham.
3. Antonio Rudiger (CB)
The German international was well below-par against Spurs and will need to put in a solid shift this week.
4. David Luiz (CB)
He was a glaring liability at the back for Chelsea against Spurs last week and the manager has every reason to expect a better display from his this time around.
5. Marcos Alonso (LB)
He hasn’t hit top gear in the last few games and will need to step up his game against Fulham.
6. Jorginho (CDM)
The Italian was outclassed by a dominant Spurs unit last week and Chelsea will need him to be back to his best this Sunday.
7.N’Golo Kante (RCM).
The Frenchman has struggled to adjust to his new role on the right of a midfield three but the manager has little choice with Jorginho in the side.
8. Mateo Kovacic (LCM)
Ross Barkley started in the Europa League and one can expect the Croatian to get a start for this one going by the rotation policy.
9. Eden Hazard (LW)
Chelsea will need him to be back to full fitness for Sunday’s clash as he is their indispensable weapon in the final third.
10. Willian (RW)
He hasn’t been doing well in recent weeks but it is unlikely that Sarri will hand Pedro a start on Sunday after the Spaniard started the Europa League game on Thursday.
11. Olivier Giroud (ST)
The Frenchman found the net in the Europa League against PAOK and Sarri should hand him a start for this one ahead of Alvaro Morata who has largely underwhelmed this season.