Picking the Best Potential Chelsea Lineup to Face West Ham on Saturday

?Chelsea are firing on all cylinders at the moment, with Antonio Conte’s side in great form coming into Saturday’s clash with West Ham at the London Stadium.

David Luiz and Danny Drinkwater will miss out through injury, with the Blues able to pick from a strong squad for this derby clash. Here is how Chelsea may lineup on Saturday.

Goalkeeper

  • Courtois

    Courtois13

?Thibaut Courtois is a certainty to start, having played in every minute of Chelsea’s Premier League campaign so far. The Belgian stopper has a decent record this season, keeping seven clean sheets so far.

Defence

  • Azpilicueta

    Azpilicueta28

  • Christensen

    Christensen27

  • Rüdiger

    Rüdiger2

The impressive start to Andreas Christensen’s Chelsea career is likely to see the Dane retain his place in the back three, despite the return to fitness of club captain Gary Cahill.

Antonio Rudiger has also impressed in recent weeks, so the England defender is likely to settle for a place on the substitutes bench.

Midfield

  • Moses

    Moses15

  • Kanté

    Kanté7

  • Bakayoko

    Bakayoko14

  • Alonso

    Alonso3

?The foundation for Chelsea’s successes is often driven by midfield general N’Golo Kante. The Frenchman provides stability and organisation, and alongside Tiemoue Bakayoko, will hold things together to allow wing-backs Victor Moses and Marcos Alonso to push forward.

Antonio Conte will have a variety of options to call upon from the bench if required, with Davide Zappacosta, Pedro and Willian all eager to stake their claims for a starting berth if given the chance.

Forwards

  • Fábregas

    Fábregas4

  • Morata

    Morata9

  • Hazard

    Hazard10

?The creative sparks up front will be conjured up by the boots of Cesc Fabregas and Belgian superstar Eden Hazard. Both players have hit top form recently, inspiring the Blues to six wins in their last seven league games.

Alvaro Morata will lead the line, with the Spanish striker having netted 9 Premier League goals so far this season.

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3 Key Battles That Could Decide Saturday’s Meeting Between West Ham and Chelsea

?West Ham and Chelsea come into this lunchtime London derby with both sides eager to secure maximum points, but for very different reasons.

The Hammers are on a barren run of form, and are without a victory in the league since the final day of September. David Moyes has tasted defeat three times in his first four games in charge, with a late goal seeing his side slip to defeat at Man City last time out.

Chelsea come into the fixture on a high, after securing six wins in their last seven Premier League outings.

Derby matches between these two often provide drama and entertainment galore, with bragging rights on the line for both sets of fans. Here are three key battles that could decide the outcome of this one…


3. Pablo Zabaleta vs Marcos Alonso

Chelsea v Swansea City - Premier League

Marcos Alonso has been a revelation for Chelsea since Antonio Conte first deployed the increasingly popular wing-backs system last season. 

The former Sunderland loanee provides genuine width for the Blues, and provides a significant attacking threat when Chelsea look to break. The Spaniard has netted 9 times in 46 league appearances for the champions, netting at an impressive one in five game ratio.

Pablo Zabaleta will have his hands full trying to keep the Chelsea man in check. The former Man City stalwart has a poor disciplinary record this season, accumulating six yellow cards already this season. He will need to use all of his experience in order to try and nullify the threat that Alonso is expected to present.


2. Manuel Lanzini vs N’Golo Kante

West Ham United v Brighton and Hove Albion - Premier League

West Ham’s main attacking threat comes in the shape of diminutive midfielder Manuel Lanzini. The Argentine maestro has become the creative focal point for the Hammers ever since Dimitri Payet’s departure last January.

The midfielder has had a relatively quiet start to the season, which perhaps reflects the struggles that West Ham have experienced so far this season. That said, Lanzini will act as chief creator for Moyes’ men and they will look to bring him into the game at every opportunity.

Standing in his way will be PFA Player of the Year, N’Golo Kante. The Frenchman has earned universal praise for his combative midfield performances, and his presence in the heart of Chelsea’s midfield is a reassuring sight for all Blues fans. 

The 26-year old is renowned for his ability to break up play, and Antonio Conte will look to him to control the game from the outset.


1. Winston Reid vs Eden Hazard

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West Ham will be hoping key defender Winston Reid is fit enough to start Saturday’s game, as they look for a way to curb the talents of the mercurial Eden Hazard.

The Kiwi defender was absent last time out, but is expected to take his place in the starting line-up on Saturday. Manager David Moyes will be looking to Reid to try and subdue the in-form Belgian, with the defenders concentration and commitment to the cause likely to be given a stern test.

Eden Hazard has been in scintillating form recently, firing the Blues to success with standout performances both domestically, and in Europe. The Belgian has scored five league goals this season, but more importantly, has been the focal point of Chelsea’s sparkling form.

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Though Chelsea will also threaten through the likes of Cesc Fabregas and Alvaro Morata, the Hammers attention will focus heavily on Hazard as he is likely to drop into pockets of space as he attempts to run at the brittle West Ham defence.

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Dortmund Hitman Aubameyang Reportedly Wants to Snub PL Giants in Favour of Milan Return

?Borussia Dortmund striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang reportedly wants to return to the club where it began for him in AC Milan, rather than opt for a new challenge in the Premier League.

The Gabonese international star was heavily linked with a move away from the Bundesliga outfit in the summer, but stayed put against the odds, although speculation is beginning to pick back up again regarding his future.

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Despite a fruitful start to the new campaign in front of goal, Aubameyang is keen for a move soon and favours a return to Milan, as reported by ?Tuttosport.

That may come as a blow to Chelsea and Liverpool, who have both been linked with the hitman as recently as the summer just gone.

Apparently the star has had numerous fallings out with teammates and coaches at the club and could be moved on for around £60m in January of next summer.

SSC Napoli v AC Milan - Serie A

Struggling Milan are desperate to get some of high quality into their team, after most of their summer acquisitions failed to make an impact in the first third of the season.

The Rossoneri lie eighth in the table after winning just six games out of 15, and hope to fund a move for Aubameyang by recouping around £26.5m for Nikola Kalinic, who was one of their summer signings.

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Former Saint-Etienne star Aubameyang is undoubtedly one of the best strikers in Europe – he finished as the league’s top scorer last season ahead of Robert Lewandowski. He has 96 goals in four-and-a-half seasons with Dortmund and would be a major coup for any side.

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Chelsea Star Cesc Fabregas Backs ‘Perfect Fit’ Coutinho to Make Long Awaited Barcelona Move

?Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas has said Liverpool playmaker Philippe Coutinho would be the perfect fit for his old club, Barcelona.

Coutinho handed in a transfer request in the summer in a bit to force a move to Barca, but Liverpool rejected every approach made for the Brazilian.

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Coutinho captained the Liverpool side that demolished Spartak Moscow 7-0 in the Champions League on Wednesday, in which he also scored a hat-trick.

The Spanish giants have not given up their hopes of signing Coutinho and are reportedly prepared to try their luck again in January when the transfer window reopens.

Barcelona are thought to have been in talks with Liverpool officials, with the Reds valuing Coutinho at around £127m.

Coutinho is reportedly still keen on the move and Chelsea star Fabregas has backed the midfielder to finally make it happen.

“I think he’s a great player,” Fabregas said, speaking to ?TV3. “I see the Barcelona style, the truth is that he is at that level.

“Where I see it is more comfortable inside, but the good thing about this player is that he can play in various positions.

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“Being flexible is also important.”

Fabregas left Arsenal for his boyhood Barca in 2011, but after first team opportunities slumped, he returned to England with Chelsea in 2014, winning two Premier League titles since.

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