Tuchel makes three changes as £100k-a-week attacker returns: Predicted Chelsea XI v Everton

Chelsea are currently gearing towards Thursday night’s fixture at home to Everton in the Premier League.

The Blues go into the midweek game fresh off the back of a dramatic late win against Leeds United. Also, they are third in the division table to keep themselves in the title conversation as the halfway stage of the season draws close.

In contrast, upcoming opponents Everton are 14th in the league struggling right now. The Merseyside club travel to Stamford Bridge off the back of just one win in their previous 10 matches.

The Chelsea Chronicle has predicted the starting line-up that Blues manager Thomas Tuchel will elect to pick on Thursday. Chelsea’s predicted XI includes three changes from the weekend’s Leeds win.

Photo by James Gill – Danehouse/Getty Images

One change in Chelsea defence

Chelsea can’t afford to drop too many points to stay with the top two Manchester City and Liverpool, so expect a very strong XI.

Blues number one goalkeeper Edouard Mendy is likely to be joined by brilliant centre-backs Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger.

However, the only change in the back three could see Andreas Christensen step in for Cesar Azpilicueta as one of the centre-halves. There isn’t much to choose between the defenders, who both rarely let the side down when they play.

Chelsea confirmed today that defender Trevoh Chalobah, along with midfielder N’Golo Kante, are back in full training. It seems a big ask to throw them straight into the XI, though.

Familiar midfield

With injuries decimating the options in midfield right now, it could be the same players lining up against Leeds.

Reece James and Marcos Alonso could continue in the wing-back role. Saul Niguez is a left-field choice to come in on the left if Tuchel wants to rotate further, but it seems unlikely.

Meanwhile, the central midfield pivot of Jorginho and Ruben Loftus-Cheek remains the most sensible option without using players out of position.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

Two changes in attack

Tuchel has the squad depth to rotate during a busy fixture schedule, especially in the forward department.

However, in-form Mason Mount will surely stay in the team when everything he seems to touch right now turns to gold.

German duo Kai Havertz and Timo Werner could get some rest after starting against Leeds, though.

Romelu Lukaku, along with £100,000-a-week attacker Hakim Ziyech, are two members of the Blues squad that will be desperate to get more minutes. Lukaku’s yet to really find his peak form since returning from injury, while Ziyech was harshly dropped after starting to look like his old self.

Incidentally, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Christian Pulisic are two more of the club’s attackers that will be pushing for a start on Thursday.

Predicted line-up

Mendy

Christensen Silva Rudiger

James Loftus-Cheek Jorginho Alonso

Ziyech Lukaku Mount

IN: Christensen, Lukaku, Ziyech

OUT: Azpilicueta, Havertz, Werner

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A sports journalist who graduated from Staffordshire University in 2016 and is a Chelsea supporter. Loves anything football or cricket related when it comes to England.