Chelsea Preview vs Fulham

Chelsea host Fulham in the Fulham Road derby on Sunday looking to make amends for the woeful performance last week against Spurs.

In stark contrast, Fulham finally managed to find a win last week with a 3-2 victory over Southampton, and all eyes will be on Claudio Ranieri.

The former Chelsea manager will be looking to keep some momentum going at his new club, but the odds will be firmly stacked against Fulham.

Chelsea qualified for the Europa League group stages last week with a convincing 4-0 win over PAOK, while playing a rotated side. The Blues are one of only three teams to maintain a 100% record in the competition.

Eden Hazard should have recovered in time to play against Fulham, having suffered an ankle injury last week, but Victor Moses has a back injury and is unavailable.

As for Fulham, Kevin MacDonald and Andre Zamba Anguissa are both ruled out for the Cottagers, but otherwise Ranieri will have a full squad to choose from.

Chelsea are unbeaten in a ridiculous 17 games against Fulham, with the Blues’ last defeat coming in 2006, and their last defeat at Stamford Bridge came in League Two in 1979.

Understandably, Chelsea have been made massive favourites at 1/6 with Sky Bet. An away victory is 14/1 and even a draw for Fulham is 6/1.

CHELSEA PREDICTED LINE-UP 4-3-3

Arrizabalaga

Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger, Marcos Alonso

Kante, Kovacic, Jorginho

Willian, Morata, Hazard.

Following David Luiz’s performance against Tottenham, many are predicting that the Brazilian will be dropped for this game. The adventurous centre-back has reportedly been at fault for a staggering 63% of goals Chelsea have conceded so far.

Andreas Christensen could be in line to replace him, having made his 50th Chelsea appearance against PAOK, but the talented youngster should be demanding playing time.

Up front, Olivier Giroud scored the consolation against Tottenham and grabbed a brace midweek, but Alvaro Morata also found the net and I think Mauricio Sarri will prefer playing the Spaniard.

FULHAM PREDICTED LINE-UP 4-2-3-1

Rico

Christie, Mawson, Odoi, Le Marchand

Seri, Johansen

Schurrle, Cairney, Sessegnon

Mitrovic

Fulham spent masses of money in the summer but have been hugely underwhelming this season. Jean-Michael Serri and Andre Schurrle among others have failed to prove their worth to the side so far.

The one positive all season for Ranieri will be the talisman, Aleksandr Mitrovic. The Serbian has been in great form this season and has been linked with a January move to Chelsea.

The Chelsea defence will have to improve greatly in order to keep Mitrovic quiet, but I think that is an achievable aim.

Surely there can’t be any other result than a Chelsea win on Sunday, with all eyes turned to the bigger North London and Merseyside derbies, I think Chelsea will comfortably win with an understated 2-0 victory.

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