Chelsea will be hosting Tottenham Hotspur for their Premier League clash at the Stamford Bridge on Sunday. This is one of the eye-popping fixtures in the seasonal calendar and the weekend afternoon is expected to deliver another thriller.
Spurs have already upstaged Chelsea in the 4th spot of the points table but the Blues remain hopeful of bridging the 5-point gap. A win at home will open up the top-four battle once again with Manchester United and Liverpool also closely stacked with 65 and 63 points after 30 game weeks.
The last time these two sides met was back in early August when Chelsea got the better of Mauricio Pochettino’s men by 2-goals to 1. A brace from Marcos Alonso turned out to be the difference makers even with Tottenham doing all the pressing and yet failing to break the defence. Their goal even had to come from Michy Batshuayi’s misdirected header.
However, Pochettino is eager to exact revenge while Antonio Conte tries to keep his job at Chelsea.
Tottenham’s season took a huge hit when Juventus knocked them out of the Champions League earlier at Wembley. Their chances of winning any major honours now lie in the FA Cup as they face off with Manchester United in the semi-final.
Chelsea relatively have it easy against Southampton and can concentrate all their focus on this fixture for now. Even they took a beating against Barcelona earlier in the season. The Catalan giants wiped them out of the European competition as well, with a 4-1 aggregate score.
The consecutive losses to both the Manchester clubs seem to have severely hurt their chances of returning to the competition next season and opportunity is ripe in this one, to make amends.
Chelsea Team News
Ross Barkley and David Luiz are long-time absentees with hamstring and ankle issues.
However, Thibaut Courtois and Andreas Christensen are expected to return despite their injury knocks over the international break.
Tottenham Hotspur News
Harry Kane’s presence is doubtful for this fixture as he is still tending to his ankle injury. Son Heung-min might have to continue in his role as the club’s number nine, no matter how ineffective he may look like.
Harry Winks is also set to miss this tie with the similar ankle issue. Toby Alderweireld is fit and well, having featured for Belgium in the past week.
Chelsea (3-4-3): Courtois; Rudiger, Christiansen, Azpilicueta; Alonso, Fabregas, Kante, Moses; Hazard, Giroud, Willian
Tottenham Hotspur (4-2-3-1): Lloris; Davies, Vertonghen, Sanchez, Trippier; Dier, Dembele; Eriksen, Alli, Lamela; Son
Eden Hazard has been in illusive of his usual self in recent times but will always be a live wire from the left wing.
Tottenham will also have Christian Eriksen as the side’s facilitator and scorer in the attacking midfield role.
Chelsea Win: 7/5
Tottenham Hotspur Win: 9/4