Predicted Chelsea XI to face Brighton in the Premier League
Chelsea completed a 7-1 rout of Grimsby Town in the third round of the EFL Cup on Wednesday and the Blues will be high on confidence when they play host to Brighton and Hove Albion in the Premier League on Saturday.
Frank Lampard’s side currently sit 11th in the standings after suffering a narrow 2-1 defeat at the hands of Liverpool last week but Chelsea are strong favourites on paper to bag all three points against the Seagulls.
Brighton played out a 0-0 draw against Newcastle United prior to a defeat against Aston Villa in the EFL Cup and Graham Potter clearly has his work cut out in getting his team back to winning ways when they make the trip to Stamford Bridge this week.
The return of academy duo Callum Hudson-Odoi and Reece James is certainly a massive boost for Frank Lampard but he is still going to be without the services of a number of key players.
Emerson Palmieri (thigh) and Antonio Rudiger (groin) are both ruled out, while Andreas Christensen is also struggling with a knee problem and might miss the weekend game.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek is still on the recovery trail from his calf injury and he won’t be back in action until another three weeks or so.
Kepa Arrizabalaga (GK)
Willy Caballero played in the EFL Cup victory in the midweek fixture but the Spaniard has always been Chelsea’s undisputed No.1 between the sticks.
Cesar Azpilicueta (RB)
The captain was denied a goal by the VAR last week against Liverpool and he is expected to return to the eleven after being rested for the EFL Cup tie despite Reece James enjoying a wonderful debut.
Kurt Zouma (CB)
The Frenchman got his name on the scoresheet in the 7-1 demolition of Grimsby Town and he will be expected to put in a solid display at the back this weekend.
Fikayo Tomori (CB)
The youngster didn’t play a part in the cup tie but he is likely to continue in the Premier League after grabbing his opportunities with both hands under Lampard.
Marcos Alonso (LB)
He hasn’t really been at his best but the injury to Emerson should allow him to get an extended run in the starting eleven.
He has adapted well to a free role in the midfield under Lampard and he is likely to return to the team after being rested for the cup tie.
N’Golo Kante (RCM)
The Frenchman was one of the standout performers against Liverpool last week and got a well-deserved goal to show for his efforts.
Mateo Kovacic (LCM)
He wasn’t in the matchday squad for the cup game but the Croatian has been one of the first names on Lampard’s teamsheet in the Premier League.
Mason Mount (LW)
The youngster is enjoying a dream debut season in the Premier League at Stamford Bridge and he will once again be expected to spark creativity in the final third for the Blues on Saturday.
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The former Barcelona man put in an inspired performance in the EFL Cup and Lampard should hand him a start ahead of Willian, who hasn’t really made much of an impact this season.
Tammy Abraham (ST)
The young No.9 has really turned it on in the Premier League this season and the fans will be hoping to see him add to his tally of 7 goals.