Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has a major decision to make as the side could play without a striker in today’s Derby game against Arsenal.
Going into the clash, the trio of Diego Costa, Didier Drogba and Loic Remy are doubtful, especially the Spaniard. Remy and Drogba could feature in the game if the club deems them fit, but that looks highly unlikely. The absence of a fit striker could mean that Mourinho might play Brazilian attacking midfielder Oscar as a false nine with Cesc Fabregas occupying Oscar’s normal position as the attacking midfielder.
With that, Kurt Zouma could be played alongside Nemanja Matic as a double pivot in front of the defence to neutralise the attacking firepower of Arsenal. Both will have a key role to play as they’ll have to break play and start counter attacks which will be their biggest weapon.
In defence, the quartet of Cesar Azpilicueta, Gary Cahill, John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic are expected to start with Thibaut Courtois guarding the goal.
Chelsea’s go to player will once again be Eden Hazard as the Belgian has been clinical in front of goal and can trouble defenders with his pace and trickery. Against Manchester United, he took his only chance and the same could happen today as Arsenal will dominate possession and Chelsea will look for the opening on the counter.
For Arsenal, only Per Mertesacker remains a doubt as the German picked up a knock on his ankle. If he doesn’t make the team, January signing Gabriel could start at the back alongside Laurent Koscielny.