Things aren’t going great for Chelsea and believing in a process is difficult given recent performances. But that sad state of affairs doesn’t change the fact that there’s a game on today. Fellow Premier League strugglers Southampton look for a no-manager bounce after sacking head coach Nathan Jones and the Blues will have to be cautious.
THE PEOPLE’S CHOICE
The 4-2-3-1 continues to gain in popularity among the WAGNH community, and is now up to 66% in the voting, with the 4-3-3 (16%) and the 3-4-3 (13%) well behind. Kepa Arrizabalaga’s lead in goal is even greater. No surprises there, then.
Benoît Badiashile makes a speedy return to the starting lineup and slots in beside Thiago Silva — who reportedly will be rested for this game, alongside the also preferred Reece James. Kalidou Koulibaly (31%) and Trevoh Chalobah (17%) would be up next in the voting. Wesley Fofana (15%) plays back-up (for now); Ben Chilwell starts ahead of the out-of-form Marc Cucurella (24%).
While Enzo Fernández is a nailed-on starter in midfield, the spot beside him seems to be up for grabs. Ruben Loftus-Cheek (22%) may have started the last two games there, but Mateo Kovačić replaces him for this one. Denis Zakaria (26%) is being eased back in slowly; Conor Gallagher (15%) and Carney Chukwuemeka (6%) remain out of favour.
A disastrous performance against Dortmund sees Kai Havertz (23%) dropped for David Datro Fofana, while the same attacking band starts behind the striker as in our last league game, with Noni Madueke joining up with Mykhailo Mudryk and João Félix. Raheem Sterling (6%) should be fit enough to come off the bench, where he watches on together with Mason Mount (38%), Hakim Ziyech (11%) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (13%).
Arrizabalaga (98%) | Chilwell (62%), Badiashile (95%), Silva (57%), James (87%) | Kovačić (47%), Enzo (95%) | Mudryk (79%), Félix (94%), Madueke (60%) | D.Fofana (55%)