Tuchel makes six changes and calls up 25-year-old for the first time in the cup: Chelsea predicted XI vs Spurs
Chelsea might already have one foot in the Carabao Cup final but this does not mean they can take Tottenham Hotspur lightly.
Antonio Conte will be aiming to avenge last Wednesday’s 2-0 defeat at his old stomping ground in tomorrow’s second leg of the semi-final London derby.
Thomas Tuchel’s men meanwhile have a strong foothold heading into tomorrow’s contest in the north of the capital.
A Kai Havertz early strike and a gifted own goal from Spurs ensured the Blues could breathe a little easier ahead of the reverse fixture.
They showed no signs of being relaxed during Saturday’s 5-1 FA Cup victory over minnows Chesterfield, however.
Tuchel put out a respectably strong line-up to ensure the National League leaders and the travelling fans got their money’s worth.
Expect the manager to take Tottenham equally as seriously, with the potential of silverware glory just over the horizon.
Here’s our predicted Chelsea XI for the cup clash:
Kepa Arrizabalaga regains the gloves from Marcus Bettinelli, who made his Chelsea debut against Chesterfield.
The Blues rather infamously deployed a back four in front of Kepa for parts of last week’s game, a first under Tuchel’s reign.
However, due to the recovery of Andreas Christensen, the tried and tested trio of centre-halves should be reintroduced.
Christensen, 25, plays in the competition for the first time this season, aiming to build upon the goal he scored on the weekend.
Malang Sarr starts for the third consecutive match, whilst Antonio Rudiger regains his place in the defence.
Lewis Hall makes way, following a strong maiden appearance for the Blues versus the Spireites.
Callum Hudson-Odoi, another scorer in the FA Cup, begins the evening at right wing-back whilst Tuchel’s employers continue to search for an alternative in the transfer market.
Cesar Azpilicueta returns on the opposite flank, having hopefully overcome the cramp he suffered against Tottenham last time around.
Hakim Ziyech makes way for the skipper.
Centrally, Jorginho takes the place of Mateo Kovacic, whilst Saul Niguez ends his good run in the team in favour of Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
Romelu Lukaku is gradually playing his way back into supporter’s good books and the goal catalogues, so anticipate him to get another stab at Spurs.
He and Christian Pulisic remain in attack, but Timo Werner drops out for fellow countryman Kai Havertz.
Chelsea predicted XI vs Tottenham: Kepa; Sarr, Christensen, Rudiger; Azpilicueta, Jorginho, Loftus-Cheek, Hudson-Odoi; Pulisic, Lukaku, Havertz