The transfer window has slammed shut so now we can focus on that most mundane of things, the actual football! Oh my!
And we return to the pitch on the back of back-to-back victories, over Luton Town in the league and AFC Wimbledon in the League Cup. Not exactly the toughest opposition, but all points and wins count the same. And we have another great chance to keep adding to that momentum and keep building that confidence today and into the upcoming international break, as we taken on Nottingham Forest.
We’re just at the start of our billion dollar project, and that’s a long term plan to be sure, but there are short term goals to hit, too.
“My success will be if we win today, not tomorrow or in one year or three. I want to win today. I am not going to make excuses to you, the players, the fans. If we don’t win, I know what is going to happen.”
-Mauricio Pochettino; source: Football.London
Date / Time: Saturday, September 2, 2023, 15.00 BST; 10am EDT; 7:30pm IST
Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6
Referee: Tim Robinson (on pitch); Anthony Taylor (VAR) — presumably not the Tim Robinson from the Netflix sketch comedy show! Then again, given the level of refereeing these days... there isn’t much difference anyway. Wahey!
Forecast: morning rains go away
On TV: none (UK); USA Network, Universo (USA); Star Sports Select HD2 (India); SuperSport Variety 2, Canal+ Sport 4 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: none (UK); NBC Sports Live, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo (USA); Hotstar (India); DStv Now (NGA)
Chelsea team news: We’ve been left with about 27-28 players, but around ten of them are currently injured or unavailable, so the squad isn’t quite as bloated as it might appear to be on first glance at the roster.
Cole Palmer is the newest arrival, with the young winger joining from Manchester City on Friday. He’s eligible to play, but may not be involved straight away. Mykhailo Mudryk could earn a recall however, having returned to full training from his brief (and as yet unspecified) midweek injury absence.
Benoît Badiashile, Marcus Bettineli, Armando Broja, Trevoh Chalobah, Carney Chukwuemeka, Wesley Fofana, Reece James, Christo Nkunku, and Roméo Lavia all remain out. Badiashile, Broja, and Lavia are back in light training and should be full participants by the time we return from break.
Nottingham Forest team news: Forest signed Callum Hudson-Odoi on Friday, but we’ll see if they completed the paperwork in time to register him for this game (guessing not). A couple weeks earlier they signed Andrey Santos on loan from us, which definitely makes him ineligible for this game, as per Premier League rules.
But the Chelsea duo were just the tip of the iceberg in what was yet another busy summer for Forest. After setting a record with 21 (twenty-one!) new signings last summer, they followed that up a whopping 19 this year, including four loanees. Chelsea’s dirty summer dozen are nothing in comparison!
Among those who arrived at Forest this summer are Ola Aina (now 26, going on 27), striker Chris Wood from Newcastle and goalkeeper Matt Turner from Arsenal. Speedy forward Brennan Johnson is the biggest exit, with Spurs paying £50m for his transfer.
Forest have three points from their three games, with the lone victory coming against Sheffield United. They suffered narrow defeats (with the “help” os some more comedy referee) in the others, and will certainly not be pushovers.
Previously: Both games finished in score-draws last season, 1-1 away and 2-2 at home. Raheem Sterling scored all three of our goals; good thing he’s in great form at the moment!