If it feels like we just played Brighton, that’s because we did just play Brighton, three weeks ago in fact, in what was the final game of the 2021 calendar year. This reverse matchup of that 1-1 result at the Bridge wasn’t supposed to happen until a few more weeks from now, but it got moved up due to the Club World Cup — and it got put on Tuesday even though neither of the teams play again until Sunday.
I’ve been binging the (stellar) second season of Cheer on Netflix all weekend, and if there’s one thing that it drives home repeatedly s that it’s all about your family. Win or lose, it’s about doing your teammates proud, keeping your head up, and doing better the next time.
We can. We will. We must.
Over to you, Chelsea.
Date / Time: Tuesday, January 18, 2022, 20.00 GMT; 3pm EST; 1:30am IST
Venue: AmEx Stadium, Brighton, UK
Referee: Kevin Friend (on pitch); Andre Marriner (VAR) — let’s hope Marriner can interpret video better than live action after his horrow-show against Spurs as the center ref.
On TV: BT Sport 1 (UK); USA, Universo (USA); Star Sports Select HD1 (India); SuperSport Premier League; Canal+ Sport 3 (elsewhere)
Steaming: BT Sport Live (UK); NBC Sports Live, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo (USA); HotStar (India); DStv Now (NGA)
Brighton & Hove Albion team news: Since the game three weeks ago, Brighton have beaten Everton, drewn with Crystal Palace, and advanced in the FA Cup thanks with a 2-1 extra-time win over West Bromwich Albion.
Solidly midtable Brighton continue to lead the league in draws (10, from just 20 played), but they do have two wins from their last four, with zero defeats.
The injury situation remains about the same as before, though the Seagulls will be without Yves Bissouma, who’s away at the Africa Cup of Nations with Mali. The 25-year-old was a real problem in midfield for us last time. Enock Mwepu is also out while Lewis Dunk, Shane Duffy, and Adam Lallana face late fitness tests.
Chelsea team news: Our injury situation also remains unchanged, with Andreas Christensen (isolation) joining long-term injury victims Ben Chilwell, Reece James, and Trevoh Chalobah. These injuries have really limited our usual options at the back, but Tuchel has experimented with a back-four a couple times lately as well.
The Best FIFA Men’s Goalkeeper of 2021, Édouard Mendy is also unavailable as he’s with Senegal (and evidently out of quarantine now). A certain Kenedy did get spotted at training last night however, following his recall from Flamengo, so I’m guessing he’ll be on the bench.
Chelsea’s defeat on Saturday was just our second in 25 games, but at the same time, we’ve dropped 18 of the last 36 points (4-6-2) available to us in the league. That’s not a great run by any stretch of the imagination.
Previously: Danny Welbeck scored a 90th minute equalizer after Romelu Lukaku opened the scoring in our first meeting.