Chelsea finally came unstuck and lost their first game in the league when they lost 2-1 to Newcastle United. The Blues tried valiantly to come back into the game thanks to a late Didier Drogba header and were helped by the sending off of Steven Taylor but Newcastle held on resolutely and provided some food for thought to Jose Mourinho.
Chelsea don’t have much time to dwell on that result as they play their final UEFA Champions League group game against Sporting Lisbon on Wednesday night at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea have already won the group and would be looking to give some of their fringe players some much needed game time. There are no injury concerns for Chelsea as Jose Mourinho has an almost full side to choose from.
Here is the predicted line up for the game against Sporting Lisbon.
With the Czech goalkeeper willing to stay on at Chelsea till the end of the season, he could be given a start in place of Thibaut Courtois, just to rest the big Belgian who has impressed since taking over as the Chelsea number one.
The Brazilian hasn’t sealed a starting place since his move from Atletico Madrid and this could be the perfect time to play him, he did come on in the second half in the loss against Newcastle.
The Serbian could shift to the centre back role for the game against Sporting. He has been one of the most consistent Chelsea players this season and although he played the entire game against Newcastle, he could be starting this game as well.
The potential is there for Zouma to become one of the best centre backs in the world and with qualification sealed this could be the chance for the young Chelsea defender to show his worth to the fans and Mourinho.
The Spaniard was substituted in the second half for Luis but should keep his starting berth to play against Sporting. The Chelsea defender has been one of the best defenders for the club.
Mikel didn’t impress a lot of people in the loss to Newcastle and Jose Mourinho could give Ramires the nod to play in midfield for Chelsea. He would be fresh since he did not take the field against Newcastle.
The engine for Chelsea should be given another chance to perform at his best. Chelsea have ticked like a Swiss clock with Fabregas in the team, and you just cannot imagine a Chelsea team without the Spaniard this season.
The German should get a chance to prove his worth to the Chelsea fans; he came on in the second half against Newcastle but really didn’t do much.
Oscar was pulled off in the second half in their last game but should keep his place in the squad just to get some more game time. The Brazilian is a bit of a form based player and playing him in this tie could bring him back to the glorious form he started the season with.
The Egyptian winger hasn’t had much playing time for Chelsea, he has made only a couple of appearances in this season’s Champions League and this would be a perfect platform for him to play in and try to resurrect his Chelsea career.
Remy is probably Chelsea’s third choice striker but playing Drogba every game is not an option that Jose Mourinho should risk. Drogba can be used as an impact sub at the best while Remy should be given time to showcase his talent.