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  • 12 January 2024

Chelsea vs Fulham: Who is going to redeem themselves tomorrow?

Fulham and Chelsea did not play well in the early matches of their EFL Cup semi-final; both want to redeem themselves with a big West London derby on Saturday. A day later, Fulham lost 2-1 against Liverpool. Chelsea was defeated by Middlesbrough with aggregate 1-0. Chelsea is returning to Stamford Bridge, and their fans are not happy. They both desire to win this important game in the Premier League.

The match against Preston North End in the FA Cup was more like a warm up for Chelsea after they scored four goals unanswered. They played another Championship team, Middlesbrough and seemed poised to give them an equally good thrashing. Manchester United’s coach, Michael Carrick was able to guide his team pass Chelsea in the EFL Cup quite surprisingly.

Could Middlesbrough do the same when they have to play Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on January 23rd? The current priority of Chelsea is to secure their third consecutive Premier League victory under Pochettino. They are currently sitting at the 10th position with Brighton & Hove Albion in seventh place just three points behind them. In December Chelsea upped their home form by winning all three games but they have not had a run of four consecutive home wins in the Premier League since July 2020.

Fulham reached the fourth round of FA Cup before playing against Liverpool in EFL cup semi-final. They earlier defeated Rotherham United 1-0 in the FA Cup and for a few minutes at Anfield, it seemed they were about to replicate that scoreline after a surprise goal from Willian. The strong defense of Fulham worked throughout most of the first half but could not stand Liverpool’s equalizer by a deflected Curtis Jones goal in the second half. Substitutes Darwin Nunez and Cody Gakpo scored Liverpool’s winning goal.

Fulham failed to maintain their one-goal lead against Liverpool, but they still get another opportunity to pick up the pieces at Craven Cottage on 24 January. Currently, their major concern is to enhance their abysmal away form in the Premier League. 2023 saw them triumph over Arsenal in their final game of the season but they have suffered defeat in their previous four away games in the Premier League conceding at least three goals every match.

Their first ever away victory over an opponent came on the opening weekend of the season when they beat Everton. Chelsea beat Fulham 2-0 at Craven Cottage in October, and it has been 45 years since the latter side triumphed over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge; the most recent triumph of Fulham dates back to October.

Team News: Chelsea vs Fulham

Some Chelsea players will miss out this weekend including Nicolas Jackson who is currently in Africa Cup of Nations. Wesley Fofana, Marc Cucurella, Robert Sanchez, Trevoh Chalobah, Lesley Ugochukwu, Reece James and Romeo Lavia among other Chelsea injured players The list is not exhaustive as possibly Christopher Nkunku also belongs to it.

Also, uncertain to play are Ben Chilwell, Carney Chukwuemeka and Benoit Badiashile. Armando Broja can possibly return to the starting eleven for this fixture as he did not play at the tip of the attack in the last match.

However, Tim Ream from Fulham was back in the squad but did not feature because of a calf problem. Adama Traore is still out because of a thigh injury, while Harrison Reed may not play due to an injury suffered in the last game. Tom Cairney could replace him. Alex Iwobi, Calvin Bassey and Fode Ballo-Toure are out because they are on AFCON duty. Fulham starters from the previous clash are likely to start again, unless they’re tired.

Possible Chelsea starting lineup:

Petrovic; Gusto, Disasi, Silva, Colwill; Gallagher, Fernandez ; Sterling , Palmer , Mudryk Broja

Possible Fulham starting lineup:

Leno; Castagne, Adarabioyo, Diop, Robinson; Palhinha Cairney Decordova-Reid Pereira Willian and Jimenez

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