The London Blues take on the Red Devils in a high-profile fixture to mark the return of club football from the international break.
In contrast, Jose Mourinho will be heading to his former side with a shaky Manchester United squad, where a victory could make an entire season’s worth of difference.
Here’s how the two sides are likely to shape-up for the big game:
The Red Devils had numerous concerns during the international break, with Diogo Dalot, Luke Shaw, Nemanja Matic, and Marouane Fellaini all picking up injuries of one sort or another.
While their earlier list of injuries to Lingard and Rojo remains populated, Ander Herrera could feature at the Bridge.
Mourinho had this to say about the Spaniard during his pre-match press conference: “Players that are going to make an effort to be available for the team, like Herrera (will play a role). He trained two days but, with the situation we have, is one step forward and he’s ready to help us.”
While an offensive lineup will be tempting for the Portuguese gaffer, a more tactical setup seems likely to be on the line, with frustrating the Blues seeming top priority.
Goalkeeper: De Gea
Defenders: Valencia, Smalling, Lindelof, Shaw
Midfielders: Fred, Herrera, Pogba
Forwards: Mata, Lukaku, Rashford
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Sarri is en route being heralded as a genius, and in Mourinho, he’ll find a challenging thorn. In terms of injury, Ethan Ampadu is the most probable absentee, while Hudson-Odoi and Barkley seem doubtful.
In terms of return from injury, the presence of Rudiger and Kovacic was all but confirmed by the manager during his press conference.
Chelsea’s biggest source of offense will be Eden Hazard, and N’Golo Kante’s new role can really have the potential to make fools out of Mourinho’s United. What will occur when the giants clash – a one-sided affair, or a technical stalemate?
Defenders: Azpilicueta, Cahill, Luiz, Rudiger
Midfielders: Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic
Attackers: Willian, Giroud, Hazard.