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Chelsea vs Newcastle: Preview, Team News, Likely Line-ups & Predicted Score
The Blues are already three points clear at the top of the league having played a game more than the rest. After beating Wigan 2-0 on the opening weekend, Roberto di Matteo’s men beat Reading 4-2 on Wednesday with the fixture moved forward due to Chelsea’s Super Cup commitments.
Di Matteo will be looking to tighten up at the back with Brian McDermott’s side causing them problems in midweek, and they are likely to be tested again by Newcastle’s front pairing of Demba Ba and Papiss Cisse.
Newcastle started well with a hard fought 2-1 win over Tottenham last Saturday thanks to goals from Ba and Ben Arfa.
Chelsea are set to be without captain John Terry who is struggling with a neck injury. He is expected to be replaced by David Luiz, who is fit again after missing the Reading game.
Marko Marin remains on the sidelines with a hamstring injury. Oscar is pushing for a start but Di Matteo is likely to keep changes to a minimum after an excellent start to the new season.
Newcastle boss Pardew is sweating over the fitness of captain Fabricio Coloccini, who has a thigh problem, and striker Demba Ba who is struggling with a shin complaint. However, the pair are expected to be fit enough to play.
Cheick Tiote is also a doubt with a calf strain and Shola Ameobi is likely to miss out with a hamstring injury.
Pardew is expected to recall several players after making nine changes for the midweek Europa League tie with Atromitos.
Chelsea have come flying out the blocks and new signing Eden Hazard looks a superb player who is going to cause all sorts of problems to opposition defences this season. Newcastle will pose their own problems going forward but we think the home side will have too much for the Geordies. Chelsea 2-1 Newcastle.
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