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Chelsea vs. Everton: Team News & Preview

The light at the end of the tunnel is here. It's the last match of Chelsea's season. Unless of course it isn't.

Christof Koepsel

For hours I dueled the gremlins. They were fierce, this bunch and frustratingly annoying with lots of sharp, pointy, silly claws. They couldn't hurt me, they were just stupid little gremlins after all, but I needed to wade past them to get to the promised land. For beyond the horde lay a wonderful world of happiness and joy and relaxation.

Five long hours of trying to make one router play nice with the other router, to have them both get along with the cable modem and the multitude of devices in the house. Five long hours of DHCPs and WPA2s and NATs and bridges and wires and wirelesses. Five long hours promising ideas, fancy solutions, stupid moments, frustrating dead-ends. It felt like it may never end.

Repeatedly trying the same ideas unsurprisingly did not bring the results I had hoped for. Unfortunately neither did just throwing everything at the wall to see what would stick. I tried the latter first, then fired it unceremoniously because it was the easy thing to do.

In the end, in the final hour, a rather simple combination lit all the green lights. Confetti poured from the ceiling. Electrons were whizzing about. I slid on my knees, arms thrown into the air, bracing myself for the pile-on that never came. How ungrateful!

That's my story. It's a metaphor.

Date/Time: Sunday, May 19, 16:00 GMT; 11:00 A.M. EDT; 8:30 P.M. IST

Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6

TV Information: none (UK); Fox Soccer Plus (USA); Star Sports (India)

Online: FoxSoccer2Go

So, two outgoing managers and one outgoing broadcaster. I think only one of the three may be missed.

Chelsea: Being the final day of the season, all matches start at the same time. This concept reached its pinnacle last year with Sergio Aguero's last minute goal for Manchester City. With the title decided, relegation set, and only fourth place left to fight for, there's far less drama this time around.

We do know that Chelsea are in. There's a Mayan scenario where if Gareth Bale scores five goals in each of the 90 minutes - the math is approximate - then Spurs would overcome their deficit in goal difference and win a potential tie-breaker with Chelsea but that's as likely as Rafael Benitez being offered a permanent contract at Stamford Bridge so ... yeah. Chelsea are in.

If Chelsea win here, they are third.

If Arsenal lose or draw, Chelsea are third (and Spurs control their own destiny.)

If Chelsea do muck it up and Arsenal win at Newcastle, then the Blues finish fourth.

If the Blues tie and Arsenal win by one-goal while scoring exactly two goals more than Chelsea, then we get that lovely 70th match of the season for the third place playoff to end all third place playoffs - yes, in Birmingham. Because that makes a lot of sense for two London teams, no? Not that this whole exercise would make much sense in the first place but I digress.

That covers all the ifs. What we know for certain is that Ramires is suspended, while John Terry, Ryan Bertrand, and Eden Hazard are injured. John Obi Mikel is in the doghouse (i.e. battling a random deadly condition that only an Interim-prescribed bubble doghouse can cure / prevent / save the world from the global panic).

The four award winners from Thursday night are all set for a fitting end to their season on the pitch, rather than on the bench. Oriol Romeu may get a cameo and perhaps we'll even see Marko "I Am Legend" Marin out there, too.

Chelsea have won eleven of thirteen at home and nine of eleven overall (since losing in the FA Cup semifinal).

Everton: In stark contrast, Everton have not won away from Goodison since January. They are a bit of bogey team for Chelsea however, so extreme care must be exercised especially around the likes of Marouane Fellaini and Kevin Mirallas. Opposition scouting - NAILED IT.

And now, it's time for the Doctor Who season finale.

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