Chelsea will still be without their full squad for the trip to Brighton but Frank Lampard still has plenty of ammunition for a strong line-up.

How Lampard would shape his team full of exciting new signings is arguably as exciting as the transfer sagas themselves.

Having five players; Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell, Thiago Silva, Billy Gilmour (injuries) and Mateo Kovacic (suspension) is far from ideal, but Timo Werner and Kai Havertz’s potential competitive debuts would ease the pain from these absences for the fans.

FBL-ENG-PR-BRIGHTON-CHELSEA-FRIENDLY-HEALTH-VIRUS

(Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

Now let’s talk about the system.

Will it be a 4-3-3, a 4-2-3-1, a 4-4-2 to accommodate Werner’s tendency to play in a pair or a 3-4-3?

With so many options, it would be difficult to predict what Lampard has in mind, but if the pre-season friendly against Brighton on August 29 told us anything, it’s that Lampard may want to experiment with new shapes.

Chelsea Training Session

(Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images)

Chelsea started the game with 4-3-1-2 with Ziyech as a No.10 behind Werner and Callum Hudson-Odoi, then switched to the more familiar 4-3-3 midgame.

Kai Havertz could easily slot in as Ziyech’s replacement if Lampard sticks with the system, but with Kovacic out of the team, the manager may want to add an additional wide player instead.

Although it would be risky to start Christian Pulisic after his hamstring injury, Havertz, Werner, Mason Mount, and even Ruben Loftus-Cheek could be used as make-shift wingers.

What would be interesting, however, if Lampard pairs Havertz and Mount in midfield which means having five attacking-minded players on the field.

Some would argue about midfield control, lack of defensive cover, etc, but Chelsea would want quick attacking transitions instead of a patient possession-based game if Werner played upfront anyway.

Predicted line-up (4-3-3):

Arrizabalaga/Caballero

James/Azpilcueta – Rudiger/Christensen – Zouma – Alonso

Kante/Jorginho

Havertz/Barkley – Mount/Kante

Hudson-Odoi/Havertz – Werner/Giroud – Pulisic/Werner

 

Lampard could also deploy a double-pivot midfield in a 4-2-3-1:

Arrizabalaga/Caballero

James/Azpilcueta – Rudiger/Christensen – Zouma – Alonso

Kante – Jorginho

Havertz/Mount

Hudson-Odoi/Havertz – Werner/Giroud – Pulisic/Werner

 

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