Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea
side face a monumental task against Manchester City on Saturday, with the hosts having won their last 11 games in the Premier League. But having had their injury-ravaged midfield return to almost full strength after injury woes and COVID issues, Thomas Tuchel’s men will feel reinvigorated. Express Sport takes a look at their expected XI against the current champions.
Kepa Arrizabalaga continues to be the man between the sticks following Edouard Mendy’s involvement at the Africa Cup of Nations.
The Spaniard produced a superb performance against Tottenham on Wednesday evening to keep a clean sheet in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg win away at their bitter rivals.
And that good form could be set to continue against the champions.
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Midfield: Hudson-Odoi, Kante, Kovacic, Saul
Hudson-Odoi and Saul do not have the defensive nous of James or Chilwell, however they are the most likely candidates to fill in.
Marcos Alonso is not seen as adequate, and so Saul will possibly fill in on the left.
Chelsea’s main central midfield options have been depleted in the past, but will make a return to the fore against City.
And with City’s energetic midfield likely to try and dominate possession, N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic are the main candidates to start.
Attack: Mount, Lukaku, Werner
Mason Mount has been one of Chelsea’s standout stars this season, and his winning assist in the Champions League final last season has shown he can produce the goods against City.
He will be expected to play behind Romelu Lukaku, who has made his return to the starting XI following the comments made against Tuchel.
The striker scored against Chesterfield, but was inconsequential against Tottenham over the two legs.
And Timo Werner is likely to be his partner on the counter-attack.