Premier League 2018-19: Predicted Chelsea XI against Brighton
After an impressive win over Manchester City last weekend and a minor glitch against Vidi FC, Chelsea will have to guard against complacency as they visit Brighton on the 17th Matchday of the Premier League.
With Arsenal looking to catch up to the Blues, let's look at all the possible measures Chelsea can take to hold on to a top 4 position and diminish the gap from Tottenham.
Alvaro Morata is the latest member of the squad who has picked up an injury and is likely to be sidelined along with Gary Cahill, Victor Moses and Marco Van Ginkel. Mateo Kovacic may also struggle to find a starting position due to a thigh issue.
The Blues gave rest to some of their star players like Eden Hazard and Antonio Rudiger for their Europa League clash, but we may get to see their magic against Brighton this weekend.
Maurizio Sarri would want to stick with his back four which consisted of Cesar Azpilicueta, Antonio Rudiger, David Luiz and Marcos Alonso.
With Jorginho and N'Golo Kante sticking to their usual position, we could see Ruben Loftus-Cheek or Ross Barkley taking up the third spot in midfield due to Kovacic's injury.
Sarri will likely opt for the same front three that helped Chelsea recover from a bad run of form with their impressive 2-0 win against the league champions, with Hazard leading the attack and Willian and Pedro supporting him from either side. Oliver Giroud is another option that could be considered in attack to take up the central role, especially with his physical prowess.
Prediction: Chelsea 2/3 - 1 Brighton
Brighton have lost each of their last six league games against Chelsea, if we look back at the timeline. But they have been playing some impressive football at their home turf and have only lost five Premier League home games since the start of the 2017-18 season.
We can expect Brighton to bring their A game if not more on Sunday, but Chelsea should have enough firepower to still win.
Published 16 Dec 2018, 14:29 IST