Chelsea head into Saturday’s London derby against Crystal Palace on a high after coming from 4-1 down to draw 4-4 with Ajax in the Champions League on Tuesday.
The Dutch giants went down to nine men with 21 minutes remaining with the score at 4-2 and the Blues struck twice through a Jorginho penalty and Reece James’ first European goal, while captain Cesar Azpilicueta’s late goal was ruled out by VAR on a dramatic night at Stamford Bridge.
It’s a result that keeps the good-feel factor around Frank Lampard’s start as manager going and they will be keen to boost that further with a victory over the Eagles this weekend.
However, the Blues boss will have to make at least one change for the visit of Roy Hodgson’s side with vice-captain Jorginho suspended after picking up his fifth yellow card in last weekend’s 2-1 win at Watford.
But with N’Golo Kante back fit we expect the Frenchman to replace the Italian, while with Mason Mount and Ross Barkely unlikely to feature due to injury, Matteo Kovacic will continue in the middle of the park and 18-year-old Billy Gilmour is also in-line to make his first Premier League start.
Up top, it’s likely Willian, Christian Pulisic and Tammy Abraham will go from the start once more after linking up well in recent matches.
At the back, Emerson could replace Marcos Alonso at left-back but expect goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Fikayo Tomori and Kurt Zouma to keep their places.
A win for Chelsea could see them move up to second at the weekend depending on how Leicester City and Manchester City do against Arsenal and Liverpool receptively.
Predicted XI: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Tomori, Zouma, Emerson; Kante, Kovacic, Gilmour; Willian, Abraham, Pulisic.