Loftus-Cheek Starts As Sarri Makes 10 Changes | Expected Chelsea Line-Up vs POAK
Chelsea take on POAK Salonika in the Europa League at Stamford Bridge on Thursday evening. Here is the side I think Maurizio Sarri will select:
Chelsea will be looking to guarantee top spot in Group L when they take on POAK Salonika in the Europa League at Stamford Bridge on Thursday evening. Here is the side I think Maurizio Sarri will select for the game:
Goalkeeper: Sarri has picked Kepa Arrizabalaga in the previous group games but with qualification secured we could see the young Spaniard rested with Willy Caballero given a rare chance between the sticks.
Defence: We should see wholesale changes at the back as Sarri once again rests his key defenders in the Europa League meaning Marcos Alonso, David Luiz, Cesar Azpilicueta and Antonio Rudiger will all make way.
Davide Zappacosta should come in at right-back while Emerson Palmeiri is set for a run-out at left-back. Andreas Christensen and Gary Cahill have played together several times in Europe this season and I expect they’ll get another chance to impress against POAK tomorrow night.
Midfield: Sarri is also set to give Jorginho a breather ahead of Sunday’s Premier League clash with Fulham so Cesc Fabregas will come in to replace the Italian international in the deep lying playmaker role.
N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic both started during the disappointing defeat to Tottenham at the weekend so I expect them to be rested with Ross Barkley and Ruben Loftus-Cheek in-line for recalls in midfield.
Attack: Eden Hazard trained with the rest of the squad today but the Belgian international won’t be risked after picking up a minor ankle injury – although Sarri is hopeful his star man will be available to face Fulham this weekend.
Pedro should be recalled to the attack while Willian could keep his place meaning that youngster Callum Hudson-Odoi may have to make-do with a place among the substitutes tomorrow evening.
Alvaro Morata appears to be Sarri’s first choice striker in the Premier League at present so the Spaniard is likely to be rested against POAK meaning Olivier Giroud will be recalled having been named on the bench against Spurs.
Here is how we think Chelsea will line-up:
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