Kovacic To Replace Barkley In The XI | 4-2-3-1 Chelsea Predicted Lineup Vs Newcastle United

BRIGHTON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 01: Frank Lampard, Manager of Chelsea looks on prior to the Premier League match between Brighton & Hove Albion and Chelsea FC at American Express Community Stadium on January 01, 2020 in Brighton, United Kingdom. (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

Premier League high-flyers Chelsea will be eager to continue their impressive away form into the new year as they are set to travel to  St.James’ Park to take on Steve Bruce’s Newcastle United side. The Blues are given a much-needed week’s rest after their league outing on the weekend, and Lampard will surely use the time available to him efficiently.

Chelsea picked up a rather convincing 3-0 home victory against Burnley last time out, but have been in better form on the road than they have at Stamford Bridge. Considering that their most recent away fixture at the Amex Stadium against Brighton ended in a goalless draw, Lampard will be more than eager to throw light on the situation at hand and once again rebuild his team’s confidence levels.

Team News

Christian Pulisic has been ruled out for a couple of weeks owing to an unfortunate adductor injury that he picked up just last week. In the American’s absence, the Blues put up a good display on the weekend, and they will surely be hoping to keep that form going. Marcos Alonso and N’Golo Kante both missed out on the weekend’s league fixture and could follow suit again this time around. Meanwhile, both Marco Van Ginkel and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are continuing on their path to recovery.

4-2-3-1 Chelsea Predicted Lineup Vs Newcastle United

Formation: 4-2-3-1

Defence

Kepa Arizzabalaga is sure to keep his place between the sticks for this clash against the Magpies, especially considering that he’s put in a couple of decent displays over the last few weeks. Antonio Rudiger and Kurt Zouma could once again form the defensive partnership for this tie, with Andreas Christensen expected to drop back down to the bench. Reece James has unquestionably been their most influential player over the last couple of fixtures and looks set to continue down the right flank, meaning that skipper Cesar Azpilicueta could be pushed over to the left.

Midfield

French star N’Golo Kante could miss out on the starting lineup once again this week, with Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic preferred as the midfield pivot. The Italian has been in decent form over the last few weeks and even pitched in with a goal in their recent league win. Kovacic, on the other hand, has seen a reduction in playing time since the new year and is set for a return to the side.

Attack

Tammy Abraham is sure to continue in the central striker’s role for Chelsea, with Brazilian veteran Willian and English prodigy Callum Hudson-Odoi on either side to offer him direct support. Just in behind the forwards, expect to see Mason Mount being deployed out of the number ten role to try and create more spaces between the Newcastle United lines.

Abhimanyu is the CEO of AM Infotrix, the support desk of The 4th Official.