Premier League giants Chelsea will be looking to reach their first-ever cup final under the managership of Frank Lampard this weekend, when they take on European rivals Manchester United at the Wembley Stadium. The Blues are coming into this fixture on the back of an unconvincing 1-0 victory over already-relegated Norwich City, a match in which the London club had controlled all the possession but created very few clear cut openings.
United, on the other hand, dropped points in the race for the Champions League places after conceding a late equaliser to Southampton forward Michael Obafemi last time out. The draw, followed by the Chelsea win, meant that the Red Devils missed out on an opportunity to go into third place and take control of their European destiny on the weekend. There have been three meetings between the two sides already this season, and perhaps worrying for Lampard’s men, they’re yet to win a single one of them.
The recent injury to young Billy Gilmour has not only ruled him out of the current season but could also force him to miss a chunk of the next campaign. Marco Van Ginkel is a name who is in the Chelsea ranks, but remains injured and is hence unlikely to feature. The returns to fitness of Fikayo Tomori and Mateo Kovacic will be perceived as good news, while French stalwart N’Golo Kante is also on the verge of a comeback. The World Cup winner’s presence in the middle of the park has been sorely missed by Lampard’s men over the last few weeks.
Here Is The Predicted 4-3-3 Chelsea Lineup Vs Manchester United:
Predicted 4-3-3 Chelsea Lineup Vs Manchester United
Kepa Arrizabalaga had his most relaxed encounter in recent months between the sticks on the weekend, as the Norwich City attackers offered next to no attacking threat whatsoever. The Spaniard is hence is expected to retain his place in the side. In front of him, Antonio Rudiger and Kurt Zouma could continue as the central defensive duo, with Andreas Christensen expected to stay on the bench for this tie. Reece James and Cesar Azpilicueta should start in the full-back positions, with former Premier League winner Marcos Alonso expected to drop down.
The return of N’Golo Kante to the base of the Chelsea midfield is sure to have a massive influence on the proceedings this weekend. The Blues have been forced to utilise Jorginho in the role over the last couple of matches, and one thing that can be said for sure is that he has not looked very secure in possession. Kante’s sheer energy and defensive positioning will be vital in keeping this rampant United front-line in check. Mateo Kovacic had a decent outing against the Canaries and is set to start, with Ross Barkley likely to be recalled into the eleven, in place of Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
Lampard’s decision to start Tammy Abraham up-front for the game against Sheffield United was probably the biggest mistake he has made in recent weeks. Having learnt from his error, Giroud was brought back into the side against the Canaries, where it was his goal that proved to be the difference between the teams. The Frenchman is likely to keep his place atop the Chelsea attack this weekend, with the usual customers, Christian Pulisic and Willian, providing him direct support down either flank.
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