Chelsea take on Manchester City in what appears to be a must-win game to reach the top four. Tuchel hinted he might make some changes with the Blues in the middle of a relentless run of games. But how much rotation is enough rotation? Should there even be any?
THE PEOPLE’S CHOICE
This is not the time to tinker with the formation or the goalkeeper, with the WAGNH community continuing to pick the 3-4-3 formation and a immaculate Édouard Mendy in goal over the 4-3-3/4-2-3-1 (4% each) and Kepa Arrizabalaga (17%), respectively.
Thiago Silva gets a rest at the back, with Kurt Zouma joining usual duo Antonio Rüdiger and Andreas Christensen. César Azpilicueta (35%) looked knackered on Wednesday so it only makes sense to also rest him here, with Reece James easily beating out Callum Hudson-Odoi (34%) for the starting nod. On the left, Ben Chilwell keeps his place, just barely ahead of Marcos Alonso (42%).
Jorginho and N’Golo Kanté remain in the pivot due to Mateo Kovačić still being out with injury and Billy Gilmour (46%) narrowly missing out by a few percentage points behind Mason Mount.
Mount also collected more votes than all but two other attacking players, so he starts up front, alongside Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic, who could certainly spearhead a counter-attacking side in this instance. Timo Werner (28%) and Kai Havertz (37%) both get a breather while the actual strikers, Olivier Giroud (11%) and Tammy Abraham (31%), continue to be on the fringes.
Mendy (81%) | Rüdiger (75%), Zouma (66%), Christensen (86%) | Chilwell (48%), Jorginho (72%), Kanté (64%), James (89%) | Mount (51%), Pulisic (81%), Ziyech (58%)
MY PREFERRED CHOICE
Azpilicueta looked absolutely knackered at the end of the game on Wednesday and I’m totally down with giving him a breather here. On the other flank, I can’t see us going with Alonso, so Chilwell pretty much needs to start. Alonso has a lot of use in this system but not against this behemoth.
This could be the type of game where Gilmour steps up and puts in a stellar performance like he did against Liverpool last year. Jürgen Klopp’s men seemed unbeatable like City at this point last season, yet the young midfielder showed them who’s boss.
Up front, it’s all about speed. If there’s ever a game to start Werner then it’s this one, and he could take advantage of City’s high line just as he did in the FA Cup semifinal. Get in Ziyech with him to whip in those tasty balls and we might just have a recipe to beating the best team in England at the moment (again).
Mendy | Rüdiger, Zouma, Christensen | Chilwell, Gilmour, Kanté, James | Hudson-Odoi, Werner, Ziyech