Cech Set To Return As Chelsea Play Catch-Up
By Simon Kay.
Title chasing Chelsea will be looking to bounce back after their Champions league elimination to Jose Mourinho’s Inter Milan on Tuesday night at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea go into the game having won 4-1 in their last premier league outing against West Ham. While our hosts come into the game following a 3-1 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur in a game which saw Paul Robinson pick up an injury which will keep him out for up to 4 weeks.
The blues will be playing later on in the day after their title rivals Manchester United battle out against a revived Liverpool side. Chelsea will be looking to close the gap at the top of the table whatever result comes from Old Trafford, and climb back above Arsenal who curently site top of the premier league table after victory over West Ham yesterday.
Carlo Ancellotti and the fans will want to see how the team reacts after the champion’s league elimination at home on Tuesday. Getting a win at Ewood Park should give Chelsea the confidence they need towards the chase for premiership glory. Chelsea lost on penalties in the League Cup game at Ewood Park back in December and will not want to see a repeat of a similar result. With Chelsea winning the Premier League reverse fixture in October by putting 5 goals past Rovers, they will be looking to do the same again.
Sam Allardyce comes into the game after last weekend defeat at Tottenham and will want his men to show some resilience against a lethal Chelsea side who will want nothing less than a win in this game. Ryan Nelsen is out with a knee injury, along with Gael Givet (groin), while Franco Di Santos cannot play against parent Club. Jason Brown should deputise for Paul Robinson in goal.
Chelsea’s goalkeeping crisis looks to be coming to an end with Cech and Hilario coming back into training after recovering from their injuries. Carlo Ancelotti has Ricardo Carvalho available and is likely to recall him to the starting line up ahead of Alex. Zhirkov should continue at left back.
Chelsea’s long term injury absentees Bosingwa, Cole and Michael Essien still miss out while Mikel keeps his holding place at the centre of the midfield.
Chelsea top scorer Didier Drogba will start upfront with Anelka and Florent Malouda should retain his place on the left after his MOM performance against West Ham last week.
Rovers have managed four successive home wins, they have kept clean sheets in three of those games. Three of Chelsea’s five league defeats have come in the north west: 3-1 at Wigan, 2-1 at Man City and 2-1 at Everton. Carlo Ancellotti’s side have won only two of their last seven away league games.
Likely line up’s:
Blackburn: Brown, Salgado, Samba, Gavin Gunning, Chimbonda, Emerton, Pedersen, Nzonzi, Dunn, Diouf, Kalinic.
Chelsea: Cech, Ivanovic, Carvalho, Terry, Zhirkov, Ballack, Mikel, Lampard, Anelka, Drogba, Malouda.
Will Chelsea manage to get the 3 points at Ewood Park? Or will Blackburn dent their title hopes? Please leave your comments below……
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