Chelsea have lost two in a row, and that’s ratcheted up the pressure on the team and the head coach heading into Wednesday’s Champions League clash against AS Roma, a potentially pivotal encounter that could set up Chelsea for an easy second set of games in the group stage. A win against Roma would make it three wins from three in our return to European competition, and it would all but guarantee a spot in the knockout rounds. With a busy schedule and several injuries and plenty of other concerns, reducing the intensity of the schedule would be a welcome development.
Losing two in a row has also cast doubt over the efficacy of the 3-4-3, though as we saw against Manchester City, the 3-5-2 isn’t necessarily an answer in and of itself either—certainly not without Morata. Fortunately, Morata should be back for this game, provided he completes his swifter than expected recovery from a hamstring injury suffered in the aforementioned City match.
Less fortunately, Chelsea will be without N’Golo Kanté and Victor Moses, while Danny Drinkwater’s fitness is starting to enter cosmic mystery territory.
Chelsea fielded a strong lineup on Saturday and have another big game coming up this weekend, at home against Watford—that doesn’t sound too impressive, but Watford are currently above fifth-place Chelsea in fourth.
In any case, the focus is on Roma at the moment. Some players might have to play three times this week. Choose wisely.