Thomas Tuchel has named his first Premier League line-up of the season for Chelsea this afternoon at home to Crystal Palace.
Tuchel’s concerning comments about N’Golo Kante have been vindicated with the French midfielder having to miss the season opener, which is a big blow to our midfield.
Without the exceptional talent of Kante, the midfield balance has been a major concern and why Chelsea supporters are still debating on whether the club need to invest in this area before deadline day.
In a big vote of confidence, 22-year-old Trevoh Chalobah is making his Premier League debut three days after making his competitive one for the club. After a summer exodus of promising young talent, it is wonderful to see Chalobah being given an opportunity to impress after a standout pre-season.
Andreas Christensen returns to the side, along with captain Cesar Azpilicueta. Both were two of the Blues’ most consistent performers at the back end of last season and it is no surprise to see them back, along with the outstanding Mason Mount, who is essential to Chelsea.
While Romelu Lukaku waits in the wings, Timo Werner will lead the attack. Werner has a lot to prove after a difficult first year. Even with Lukaku’s return, Werner needs to add more goals to the six he got in the league last time out.
With Hakim Ziyech out injured, Christian Pulisic has the chance to start and I hope for the American’s sake he can take these opportunities as injuries have halted his career at Stamford Bridge so far.
I am disappointed to not see Callum Hudson-Odoi make the line-up after a mostly positive pre-season. Between Hudson-Odoi and Pulisic, the English winger has made a stronger impression for me.
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Chelsea are looking for an eighth successive league win against Palace for the first time. The last meeting back in April at Selhurst Park finished 4-1 in what was one of the Blues’ best attacking performances under Tuchel so far.
With champions Manchester City, Liverpool and Manchester United all vying for the top this season, it is imperative the European champions start fast in the opening weeks.
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