CHELSEA TEAM NEWS: INJURIES, SUSPENSIONS AND LINE-UP VS BRIGHTON

The Blues travel to the relegation-threatened club as they aim to turn around a mediocre run of form that has seen them struggle to score goals

Chelsea are in the midst of a run of three consecutive scoreless games for the first time in their history but they are hoping to put that behind them as they battle for a top-four place in the Premier League.

The champions are 15 points behind leaders Manchester City and have slipped down into fourth place with little chance of retaining their crown.

Brighton, who the Blues tackle on Saturday, are just three points above the relegation zone as they have shown inconsistency in the busy winter period.

INJURIES

Ross Barkley is still waiting to make his Chelsea debut after seven months out injured. The £15 million January signing had surgery on his hamstring while at previous club Everton.

David Luiz is available for selection once again after a prolonged spell of treatment on his knee but remains on the fringes of the squad with Andreas Christensen’s emergence. However, he may get closer to the first team with Gary Cahill coming off in the 33rd minute with a hamstring injury against Leicester City.

Cesc Fabregas is also a doubt after feeling pain in his hamstring.

Chelsea are thought to have no other injury worries ahead of this weekend’s match, though Baba Rahman seems to be inching towards a loan move return to Schalke after a long-term knee injury.

SUSPENSION

Chelsea have both Alvaro Morata and Pedro suspended after they were shown red cards against Norwich in midweek. The pair both earned their first bookings for simulation, with Pedro getting a second for a professional foul and Morata earning his marching orders for dissent.

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The Premier League rules also now state that 10 yellow cards are needed to earn a ban for accumulation, with the 19-game deadline passed by all clubs in the league. Morata is closest to reaching the 10 figure with his eight yellow cards accumulated this season. Any player that reaches 10 yellow cards will earn a two-match ban.

POTENTIAL LINEUP

Conte is unhappy with recent results, which have seen the Blues failed to score in three game in a row. Most worryingly of all, Leicester City completely dominated what Conte called a ‘tired’ Chelsea at Stamford Bridge last weekend.

The 120 minutes played against Norwich won’t have helped for many players although some of them were rested against Norwich.

There are some complaints about the performances of Tiemoue Bakayoko and Morata but there were few positives in last week’s Premier League game.

Some see the 3-5-2 formation as the problem, with Eden Hazard and Morata both struggling for their best form.

Conte has Willian available, which could perhaps see more attacking system introduced, with Bakayoko the likely victim.

Cahill is likely to be out so Antonio Rudiger will likely slot into left centre-back, playing alongside Andreas Christensen and Cesar Azpilicueta. Goal.com culled from.

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Chidi Iloamaeke

Chidi has exceptional passion for writing and an eye for exclusives.

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