Fulham vs Chelsea Preview: Premier League 2018-19 Match Preview, Team News, Predicted Lineups and More
After a promising performance against Manchester City in the Carabao Cup final that saw them miss out on the trophy by the finest of margins, the Blues held their nerve, kept their mental stability and upstaged Spurs by 2-0 at Stamford Bridge.
February was not an ideal month for Maurizio Sarri, who only managed to beat Huddersfield and Malmo over two legs, which also supposedly left his Chelsea future hanging by a thread. However, the victory showed a lot of promise.
Fulham, on the contrary, is in a huge spot of bother, as they are languishing at the bottom of the Premier League table, only ahead of the Terriers.
With Ranieri now sacked after just 16 matches in, former Fulham and Chelsea player Scott Parker is ready to take over on an interim basis.
They will strictly have to be defensively alert against a Chelsea side that is expected to gobble up almost 70% of the ball.
Here's your team news and predicted XI for the clash.
Former Chelsea player, Andre Schurrle, who scored a memorable hat-trick against his present club, is ruled out as he is still on road to recovery from a viral fever. Meanwhile, Alfie Mawson and Marcus Bettielli are completely out of contention.
Under new caretaker boss and former Chelsea man Scott Parker, we can expect crowd favorite Ryan Sessegnon to man his favored advanced position down the left, while Tom Cairney should revert to midfield.
The Blues have fresh injury concerns ahead of the West London derby. Davide Zappacosta might have recovered from illness but regardless, he is unlikely to feature in the game.
With five crucial fixtures in the next 21 days looming, Sarri will have to play smart and field a changed XI, without the likes of Eden Hazard or either of Luiz or Rudiger.
Given his reluctance to tinker his full-fledged playing XI, we can still expect a host of first-team stars to take the field from the very first kick of the ball.
Fulham (4-5-1): Rico; Odoi, Nordtveit, Ream, Bryan; Cairney, Chambers, Seri, Sessegnon; Babel; Mitrovic
Chelsea (4-3-3): Kepa; Emerson, Rudiger, Luiz, Azpilicueta; Kante, Jorginho, Barkley; Pedro, Higuain, Willian