Venue: Stamford Bridge
Date: Wednesday, 29 January
Kick-off: 19.45 GMT
West Ham tonight then, and a chance to put a bit of pressure on the league leaders after their draw against Southampton last night.
We’ve looked a lot more solid as a unit lately, with Mourinho’s management style starting to translate onto the pitch, and now that the questions around Juan Mata have finally been answered we need to move onwards and upwards.
Of course, with Arselona dropping points last night it’s be just like us not to take advantage of that – but then if we can’t defend against Andy Carroll then I’d be inclined to agree with Jose’s party line that we won’t be winning any title’s this season!
Going into tonight’s game, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho insists “Every match is difficult. I look to West Ham and I see them in trouble in the table but I feel a difficult match, new players, time to rest from the difficult Christmas period they had. Our main objective for this season is to build a team, the best way to build a team is to be competing for things. Everything is coming to us. I can imagine – more than imagine, believe, really – that next season we are going to have a really strong team, starting from day one with everybody. This season we are in the competitions, I’m not saying to win the competitions, I’m saying to win the next match. Next match is West Ham. We are there to try to win it. ”
West Ham boss Sam Allardyce meanwhile, says “We can’t go to Chelsea and lie down. We can’t go to Chelsea and think that we’re not going to get a result. When all said and done, West Bromwich Albion should have beaten Chelsea this season. In a one-off game, if you play to your best and Chelsea aren’t functioning at their best, then you can get to the end result like West Brom did. It can be achieved at any one time in any one game and we’ve got to believe that it can be achieved.”
For Chelsea, Fernando Torres (knee) and Marco van Ginkel (knee) are injured and we’re still waiting for Salah’s arrival.
For West Ham, Joe Cole (groin) misses out but Kevin Nolan returns from a four-match ban. New loan players Antonio Nocerino and Marco Borriello could feature.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Cech; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Ramires, David Luiz; Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Eto’o
WEST HAM (Possible line-up): Jaaskelainen, O’Brien , Johnson, Collins, Rat, Nolan, Morrison, Nocerino, Jarvis, Downing, Carroll
Chelsea 2-0 West Ham (17th March 2013)
We’ve won our last seven games in all competitions, keeping five clean sheets in that run. The Hammers on the other hand, have lost five of their last six, conceding 19 and scoring just four. In head-to-head’s, we’ve won 12 and lost just one of our last 15 Premier League games against West Ham and we’re unbeaten in our last seven at home in the league against them.
Let’s hope its as straightforward as the stats suggest eh?