Mateo Kovacic has been ruled out, but Thiago Silva and N’Golo Kante should return to the Chelsea lineup when they take on Arsenal.
Chelsea will be aiming to make it four wins in four games across all competitions when they lock horns with local rivals Arsenal at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League on Wednesday night.
Leading up to the game, manager Thomas Tuchel has one new injury to contend with as Mateo Kovacic is ruled out due to an ankle problem he picked up against Crystal Palace at the weekend. Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ben Chilwell remain sidelined for the Blues.
“Kova is out for the game tomorrow,” Tuchel confirmed in his pre-match press conference. “He has an ankle ligament injury and is in some pain. He is looking at two weeks out, and hopefully, he won’t be out for much longer than that, but two weeks can be a long time for us in terms of games. “
“As for the rest of the squad, Callum Hudson-Odoi is out for the game, Ben Chilwell is out of the game and we have some players that are doubts. We will need to examine those players before tomorrow but hopefully that is nothing too bad,” the Chelsea boss added.
Tuchel is expected to make a few changes to the lineup that started the FA Cup semi-finals against Crystal Palace. One of the alterations could come in defence, where Thiago Silva could be reinstated to the starting XI after being benched at the weekend. The veteran should slot in at the heart of the three-man backline, flanked by Andreas Christensen and Antonio Rudiger.
Reece James, who has started as the right-sided centre-back in the last couple of matches, should move to his natural habitat as a wing-back. It would mean that captain Cesar Azpilicueta drops to the bench. Meanwhile, Marcos Alonso should continue on the left flank in the continued absence of Chilwell.
Jorginho had a mixed game against Palace and may be dropped from the starting XI on Wednesday. The Italian could be replaced by N’Golo Kante against Arsenal. With Kovacic ruled out, his spot could be taken up by Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who was in fine form in the win against the Eagles.
The attacking trident of Mason Mount, Kai Havertz and Timo Werner has been performing well recently and should not be tinkered. Romelu Lukaku would thus have to settle for a place on the bench yet again.
Chelsea Predicted XI: Mendy; Christensen, Silva, Rudiger; James, Loftus-Cheek, Kante, Alonso; Mount, Havertz, Werner