Chelsea will be looking to get over their FA Cup final disappointment on Thursday night when they host Leicester City in their penultimate Premier League clash of the campaign. And Thomas Tuchel could be set to keep faith in Romelu Lukaku to lead the frontline for the visit of the Foxes.
The Blues were involved in an enthralling FA Cup final showdown with Liverpool on Saturday as both sides attacked at will. But they were unable to find a route to goal and eventually missed out on silverware as the Reds delivered in a penalty shootout.
Tuchel could mix things up following the energy-sapping contest at Wembley. And Express Sport takes a look at the line-up the German could opt for at Stamford Bridge.
Goalkeeper – Mendy
Edouard Mendy kept clean sheets on all three occasions he took to the Wembley pitch this season. But remarkably his endeavours between the posts weren’t enough to help his side win either the Carabao Cup or FA Cup as they were beaten on penalties by Liverpool in the final of both competitions. Mendy has kept 23 clean sheets this season and will line-up between the posts once again for this one.
Defence – Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Silva
Cesar Azpilicueta could return to Tuchel’s starting team against the Foxes, despite the fact he missed a spot kick in Saturday’s shootout. The ace has been tipped to move to Barcelona this summer but is still clearly trusted by Tuchel after making 45 appearances this season.
Azpilicueta could line-up alongside Antonio Rudiger, who has already confirmed he will leave Stamford Bridge this summer, and 37-year-old Thiago Silva, who has defied his years by producing a string of stellar performances throughout the campaign.
Midfield – James, Jorginho, Kante, Alonso
Tuchel could well be dealing with tired legs in his squad following their 120 minutes of action at the weekend. But the ex-Paris Saint-German boss could ask Reece James and Marcos Alonso to go again and provide the width down the flanks against Brendan Rodgers’ men. The duo both looked dangerous in the final third against Liverpool last time out, with Alonso hitting the crossbar from a free-kick in the second period.
Meanwhile, Mateo Kovacic is a doubt for Thursday’s clash, which means N’Golo Kante could come back into the midfield alongside Jorginho. The France international has been out with an injury in recent weeks but came off the bench at the weekend and should be fit enough to take over from Kovacic.
Forwards – Mount, Ziyech, Lukaku
With Timo Werner ruled out and Kai Havertz facing a late fitness battle, Tuchel could ask Lukaku to lead his frontline once again. The Belgium international has scored three goals in his last two Premier League matches and will be keen to finish the season on a high following an underwhelming campaign in west London. Lukaku could be flanked by Mason Mount and Hakim Ziyech as the Blues look to cement a third-place finish.