After a run of four straight Premier League matches, Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea switch gears and return to FA Cup action for the first time since Lampard’s sacking. A place in the quarterfinals is up for grabs at the Oakwell on Thursday, along with a chance to perhaps rotate the squad a bit more than we’ve seen so far and not just in attack.
While Tuchel has been largely able to call on the entire squad for his first couple weeks in charge, we do have some growing injury and availability concerns lately. Thiago Silva is out, and will be for at least another week. Kai Havertz and Timo Werner are dealing with various knocks, while Christian Pulisic was out this weekend due to a family matter. His availability is currently unknown. Others, like N’Golo Kanté and Kurt Zouma have just recently returned from dealing with their own minor-ish injuries, while Hakim Ziyech apparently hasn’t really been fully fit either.
Given the large squad and the various COVID restrictions in place, not to mention the new management and the stage of the competition, it’s still unlikely that we will get much youth involvement beyond Billy Gilmour and maybe Tino Anjorin.