After Tuesday night’s shenanigans, Chelsea have now won just 3 of 9 games at Stamford Bridge this season (in all competitions). It’s a bit of a shocking statistic, and one that’s not easy to understand. So let’s just move on and get a win this weekend and send the team off right to the final international break of the calendar year (hurray!).
Chelsea, winners of a league-best five in a row, come in with a six-point lead over fifth place Arsenal, and depending on how Manchester City (away at Liverpool) and Leicester City (home to Arsenal) do, we could even finish the weekend in second! But as Frank Lampard says, let’s just focus on our own tasks. Palace are solidly mid-table after all, and will be looking to be as annoying as possible.
Date / Time: November 9, 2019, 12:30 GMT; 7:30am EST; 6pm IST
Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6
Referee: Mike Dean — Dean was the VAR last weekend, when he gave the hilarious penalty for Jorginho brushing Deulofeu’s leg and the Watford forward falling over after a couple extra steps.
Forecast: Cold and wet
On TV: BT Sport 1 (UK); NBCSN, Universo (USA); Star Sports Select HD1 (India); Canal+ Sport 2, SuperSport 3 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: BT Sport Live (UK); NBC Sports Live, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo (USA); HotStar (Inida); DStv Now (NGA)
Chelsea team news: N’Golo Kante’s back, and that may be all that really matters. Jorginho however is suspended, while Antonio Rudiger, Ross Barkley, and Ruben Lofus-Cheek continue to be out. Mason Mount may be fit enough to play after spraining his ankle on Tuesday because his ligaments are apparently made of rubber.
Will be intriguing to see what full back combination Frank Lampard opts for, with Marcos Alonso getting the hook at half-time against Ajax and both Reece James (as right back) and Cesar Azpilicueta (as left back) playing very well in the second-half comeback. Tammy Abraham was back on the scoresheet last weekend and now has 9 Premier League goals, but Jamie Vardy continues to lead the Golden Boot race with 10.
Chelsea have kept a clean sheet in our last two home Premier League games (Brighton, Newcastle), but since then we’ve lost to Manchester United in the League Cup and only drew with Ajax in the Champions League at Stamford Bridge.
Crystal Palace team news: Palace are in the middle of a rather difficult five-fixture run against the top five teams in the Premier League. They’ve lost to Manchester City and Leicester City so far, while drawing with Arsenal, and they’ll face Liverpool in the first game after the international break. But they’ve won 7 of 11 away league games dating back to February, losing only to Spurs (twice) and Sheffield United in the process.
The big question for Palace will be the fitness of Gary Cahill, who’s been steady as a rock for them this season — no surprise there. He clashed heads with Cheikhou Kouyate last week, who is also an injury doubt, as is Mamadou Sakho who’s been dealing with a nagging thigh injury.
Previously: Let’s hear it one more time for the 4-4!