Mauricio Pochettino will unlikely make any changes to the team that beat Tottenham Hotspur when Chelsea and Manchester City clash on Sunday.
Chelsea will look to build on the win over Tottenham Hotspur when they host Manchester City at Stamford Bridge on Sunday evening. And Mauricio Pochettino does not have any new issues to deal with ahead of his side’s latest fixture.
But Armando Broja should be fit and available to take on Manchester City after overcoming a knee issue. But Wesley Fofana (ACL), Ben Chilwell (thigh), Trevoh Chalobah (hamstring), Carney Chukwuemeka (knee), Romeo Lavia (ankle), and Christopher Nkunku (knee) remain on the sidelines.
But Pochettino has revealed in his pre-match press conference that Nkunku and Lavi are close to returning after coming far along in their rehabilitation programs. He said, “I had a conversation with Christopher and he said to me he wanted to be involved after the international break, against Newcastle.”
“I asked yesterday and he wasn’t as sure, so I told him he is a liar! In a good way, though. I think he’s close and he is doing really well. We are so happy with him in the way that he is doing his recovery. He is very professional.”
“Romeo Lavia is also close, they were both training today on the pitch. We hope that next week they will be involved with the team and we will assess day by day to see when they can start to play and help the team.”
With Lavia still unavailable, there is no looking past Moises Caicedo, Enzo Fernandez, and Conor Gallagher. Gallagher will reprise the no. 10 role but will drop deep off the ball to create defensive overloads to stop Manchester City’s moves. Meanwhile, Pochettino also discussed Cole Palmer’s progress since arriving from Manchester City.
He said, “I think he’s a clever guy who adapts really quickly. We are building a team and he was quick to see the situation, take it, show character and personality, and then good performances. We are so happy with him, but I think he still needs to improve. It’s special for him to play against his former club and team-mates. We trust in him. He needs to improve but he’s showing real quality.”
Palmer will take his usual spot on the right flank, with Raheem Sterling featuring on the left wing to complete an ex-Manchester City wide-attacking duo. Nicolas Jackson will spearhead the Chelsea attack against the away side, meaning Broja and Mykhailo Mudryk will find themselves on the bench.
Finally, the defensive unit will also remain unchanged, with Levi Colwill starting as a left-back. Reece James will feature on the right flank, with Axel Disasi and Thiago Silva forming the central defensive partnership. The quartet will protect Robert Sanchez between the sticks against Manchester City on Sunday.
Predicted Chelsea XI: Sanchez; James, Disasi, Silva, Colwill; Caicedo, Fernandez; Palmer, Gallagher, Sterling; Jackson