Chelsea’s third Premier League game of the new season sees the Blues travel to The Hawthorns to face West Bromwich Albion. (26/9 ko: 5.30 pm) Frank Lampard will be hoping to build on the 6-0 victory against Barnsley. The boss’ task of selecting a team will become increasingly difficult over the coming weeks as players return from injury.
Goalkeeper and defence
Frank Lampard confirmed during today’s press conference that this game would come too soon for new signing Edouard Mendy to be involved. That leaves the Blues boss with a straight choice between Willy Caballero and Kepa Arrizabalaga. The Spaniard has been under increasing pressure following a mistake against Liverpool. However, Caballero faired far better keeping a clean sheet as well as making some crucial saves during the Blues midweek carabao cup victory. It’s a tough choice, but I do believe that Lampard will choose Caballero to be the main man this week.
It’ll be interesting who Frank Lampard selects for his back four this week. I suspect Reece James will come back in to fill the right-back slot, with Marcos Alonso filling the role on the left-hand side. Lampard did stress during the post-match press conference that there are a run of games coming up. With that in mind, we may see the pack is shuffled this weekend. I suspect Thiago Silva will continue and would expect him to start this game. The Brazilian played an hour on Tuesday. I hope he starts to continue to build up an understanding with his teammates by possibly putting in a similar shift at The Hawthorns. Fikayo Tomori was given the nod on Tuesday. However, I suspect Kurt Zouma will be given the chance to shine in tomorrow’s premier league clash.
I think and N”Golo Kante will undoubtedly return to the team after being rested. Matteo Kovacic still looks a little short of match fitness during the clash with the Tykes. I suspect this might allow a more attacking player such as Ruben Loftus-Cheek. Hat-trick hero Kai Havertz excelled in the number 10 role far better than he has in other positions in the previous two games. I certainly hope he continues to play that role tomorrow.
Lampard confirmed that Hakim Ziyech and Christian Pulisic would be missing. Timo Werner is likely to return maybe not upfront. Tammy Abraham was excellent in the midweek, leading the line impressively. With that in mind, I believe we could see the Englishman starting upfront with Timo Werner and Mason Mount alternating alongside Havertz just behind the striker in attacking roles.
West Brom have not had the best of starts and Chelsea will be clear favourites. However, it’s unlikely we will see a repeat of the avalanche of goals seen during the week. Although defending appears to be West Brom’s Achilles heel it won’t be easy to break them down. Score: West Brom 1 Chelsea 3.