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Chelsea fully fit and ready for ‘extra special’ Spurs derby in 1000th game of Abramovich Era

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Lampard speaking in his pre-match press conference

Chelsea Training Session & Press Conference Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Chelsea are as ready as we’ll ever be for Sunday’s special Spurs showdown, with the squad fully fit, hearts fully lit, and minds fully focused. Or something.

The big news in terms of the fitness is that Christian Pulisic looks ready though obviously that dodgy hamstring (and/or all the other soft tissues) are always a concern.

“Team news-wise, we are as we were really. Christian Pulisic is back in contention for the game after working on his fitness. Whether Christian is ready to start is another question, as it is hard to gauge match fitness when you’ve only been training but he is ready and he is in contention.

“Kai Havertz played some minutes against Rennes the other day following his time out and it’s more just checking on his potential for match fitness, but overall we are in pretty good shape.”

-Frank Lampard; source: Chelsea FC

The returns of Pulisic and Havertz may give Lampard a proverbial selection headache, but it should allow him to add some fresh legs into attack and midfield, and keep the newly discovered balance in the team maintained as best as possible. The head coach will know better than most how ruthlessly Mourinho’s teams can exploit any weaknesses in the opposition.

“One of the best things I’ve seen from us recently is the balance in our team. I’d like to think we’re not an overly attacking team that will leave ourselves vulnerable but we’ll have to be aware, particularly of players like Harry Kane.”

Either way, it’s going to be a most special derby, as it usually is against Spurs, now with the added spice of Spurs being on top of the league and Chelsea just two points behind in third, not to mention Mourinho’s presence and latest return to the Bridge. And it also just happens to be 1000th game of The Roman Era. The last time someone was celebrating a 1000th game at Stamford Bridge, it didn’t go so well for him, so let’s not Wenger this up.

“Chelsea against Tottenham is extra special anyway because of the rivalry between the two teams but the fact we’re both in good form and towards to the top of the table definitely adds spice. [But] the message from me and the players is to try and win the football match. I’m sure that will be the best way to mark a very special landmark.

“As manager and as a player who was involved in a lot of those games, I can give him a huge thank you because nothing that we have achieved in the Roman Abramovich era could have happened without him and his support. It’s not just the financial input but also the development of the training ground, the love and time put into the Academy and the trophies we’ve been able to win have obviously all been made possible by him.

“We’re very thankful, I certainly am, but our end of the bargain now is to try to work to remain successful on the pitch.”

-Frank Lampard; source: Chelsea FC

All eyes on this one then.