Predicted Chelsea line-up to face PAOK in the Europa League
Chelsea begin their Europa League campaign with an away trip to Greece to face PAOK Salonika on Thursday night. Maurizio Sarri’s men have made a perfect start in the league with 5 wins in 5 games.
Chelsea have a London Derby to entertain on Sunday (against West Ham away from home), so the manager might want to keep his first-choice players fresh for that.
Cesc Fabregas and Emerson, who were likely to start this game, are doubtful. Ruben Loftus-Cheek would be kicking himself as he got injured during the international break. We may see a reshuffled line-up in Greece on Thursday.
Probable Chelsea XI
Manager: Maurizio Sarri
Willy Caballero (GK)
Kepa Arrizabalaga might get a rest and Caballero could get his chance to shine.
Davide Zappacosta (RB)
With Cesar Azpilicueta expected to be rested, Zappacosta may get a chance to prove his worth under the new manager.
Andreas Christensen (CB)
The Danish centre-back impressed last season but has not received a proper chance under Sarri. Europa League could well be his chance to re-establish himself.
Gary Cahill (CB)
Cahill seems like he will only play a fringe role this season. He might get an opportunity to play in the Europa League.
Marcos Alonso (LB)
Emerson is a doubt for this contest, and hence Alonso could start this game.
Danny Drinkwater (LCM)
Another fringe player who might get a chance in this game. He must make good use of this.
Ethan Ampadu (CM)
The young prodigy has been knocking on the door since his terrific performance for Wales. He has to display his qualities whenever he gets a chance and this game could be one such opportunity.
Ross Barkley (RCM)
Barkley started the season well, but his place has since been taken by Mateo Kovacic. Expect the Englishman to start this game.
The Brazilian was on the bench against Cardiff, so he could start on Thursday.
Alvaro Morata (ST)
The Spaniard’s place has been taken by Olivier Giroud. Now he must respond by performing well in the Europa League games if he gets to play.
Victor Moses (RW)
If Pedro and Eden Hazard get a night off, expect Moses to start on the right wing.