Potter recalls £62m man to starting team - Predicted Chelsea XI vs Villa

Potter recalls £62m man and drops 25-year-old to the bench: Chelsea's predicted XI to face Aston Villa

Graham Potter is looking to make it five wins in a row as Chelsea this manager as he prepares for the challenge of Aston Villa on Sunday.

He will be without Reece James and Wesley Fofana through knee injuries suffered in Europe, whilst N’golo Kante looks set for an extended stay on the sidelines.

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There is likely to be more rotation in the Chelsea side, with an out of form side waiting for them at Villa Park.

Here’s who the Chelsea Chronicle is predicting will start this weekend.

GK and Defence

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More of the same between the sticks, with Kepa Arrizabalaga offering no reason for Potter to drop him this weekend.

With Reece James absent, Ruben Loftus-Cheek will look to pick up the attacking responsibilities of the right wing-back role.

To cover him, and also offer the chance to play a back four, Cesar Azpilicueta will replace the in-form Trevoh Chalobah in defence.

Thiago Silva’s importance will be seen again as he gets another start in the middle of defence, despite starting on Tuesday night.

Kalidou Koulibaly’s impressive run of form since coming into Potter’s side will see him continue on the left of a back three.

The battle for left wing-back will continue to hot up, although this time it will be £62m man Marc Cucurella starting, seeing Ben Chilwell dropped to the bench.

Midfield

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Jorginho was at his very best at the San Siro on Tuesday, with the game lending to keeping hold of the ball towards the end. With it likely to be a similar story this weekend, he will keep his place.

Conor Gallagher will replace Mateo Kovacic alongside him, with the Croatian still not looking at 100% despite returning to full fitness.

Attack

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Chelsea fans saw the best of Mason Mount in just 45 minutes against AC Milan, and the rest in the second half means he’ll be back amongst the starters this weekend.

With his goal against Wolves not rewarded with a start in the week, Kai Havertz will return against Villa looking to score in back-to-back Premier League games.

Raheem Sterling will complete the attack, and he’ll be looking to be on the scoresheet despite it being only three appearances without one.

Jack is a writer for The Chelsea Chronicle. He has been a part of GRV Media since June 2022. He has a First Class Honours degree in Football Journalism from the University of Derby, graduating in 2021. Jack has experience working freelance for The Sun and The Athletic, whilst also being published for the Non-League Paper and reporting for Burton Albion's academy side. He is a lifelong Chelsea fan and will debate with anyone about everything and anything football related. He also holds a passion for gaming and music, and thinks he knows every word to every Oasis song ever released