Maurizio Sarri is likely to recall star players Eden Hazard and N’Golo Kante to the starting lineup, when Chelsea take on Brighton & Hove Albion.
Chelsea will be aiming to keep up the pressure on their top-four rivals, when they lock horns with Chris Hughton’s Brighton & Hove Albion at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night.
Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri has revealed ahead of the game that Marcos Alonso will miss out of the game, after picking up a hamstring injury in the Blues’ previous game against Cardiff City. “We have a little problem with Alonso. In the last match he had a little problem with his hamstring. He has to rest for three or four days,” the Italian said in his pre-match presser.
With the Spaniard ruled out, Emerson Palmieri is set to take his place in the starting XI at left-back. No changes are expected on the opposite side though, with Cesar Azpilicueta set to start. But, Andreas Christensen could replace David Luiz as Antonio Rudiger’s partner at the heart of Chelsea’s defence in front of goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga.
Jorginho should continue at the base of the three-man midfield for the home team against Brighton, but there will be changes in the other two slots. Ruben Loftus-Cheek scored the winning goal for Chelsea against Cardiff after coming on from the bench and should be rewarded with a start on Wednesday night.
N’Golo Kante is set to return to the starting lineup, after being surprisingly left out of the weekend clash against the Bluebirds. Another player who was not part of the starting XI in the last match, but should be taking the field in the midweek is star man Eden Hazard, with the Belgian likely to take his place on the left-side of the attacking trident.
When asked if the duo would be starting, Sarri said, “I don’t know at the moment but I think so. They rested in the last match, N’Golo for all the match, Eden for 55 mins, but we need to consider N’Golo in this season has played 50 matches, and Hazard 48. In the last two weeks they played two matches for their national teams, so sometimes they need to rest, but now they are okay.”
Callum Hudson-Odoi could be set to make his first-ever Premier League start against Brighton, after being an unused substitute against Cardiff.
Speaking of Hudson-Odoi in his presser, Sarri said, “In pre-season after four or five training sessions I realised Callum was a player with great potential. In my opinion in that moment he wasn’t ready to play at this level, but during the season he has improved and now he is ready to play.”
Gonzalo Higuain is likely to miss out after another misfiring display at the weekend, with Olivier Giroud set to replace him as the lone striker for Chelsea.