Guus Hiddink managed his first win as manager of Chelsea with an impressive 3-0 triumph over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park last weekend and the performance was arguably the Blues’ best this season.
Now Hiddink will be hopeful of his side translating the fine form into the FA Cup as well when Chelsea square off against League One side Scunthorpe on Sunday and the match promises to be an interesting encounter.
While Hiddink has stressed the importance of claiming a victory in the FA Cup, he is likely to make a host of changes to his lineup due to the injuries piling up at the moment.
Here is a strongest possible lineup for Chelsea on the night –
Asmir Begovic perhaps harshly lost his place in the Chelsea starting lineup following the return to full fitness of Thibaut Courtois but there is no doubting that the Bosnian star will get his chance in the clash against Scunthorpe.
Begovic is arguably the best second choice goalkeeper in the Premier League at the moment and he will surely be hopeful of keeping a clean sheet on the day.
The 35 year old legs of John Terry is likely to be handed a rest during the clash and Gary Cahill looks the most likely replacement for the Chelsea skipper on the day. Alongside Cahill, the young Kurt Zouma seems certain to start at the heart of the backline.
In the full back positions, Abdul Baba Rahman looks likely to be starting in the left back position while young Ola Aina is also expected to be handed a chance to impress. The likes of Branislav Ivanovic and Cesar Azpilicueta are set to be handed a rest.
John Obi Mikel has turned out to be a key player for Chelsea in recent weeks under Hiddink and in order to preserve the Nigerian international for the Premier League matches; he should be given a rest this weekend in the FA Cup.
Even Cesc Fabregas is set to be rested as well and it is very likely that the midfield pairing on the day will be of Nemanja Matic and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.
In the wide positions, Eden Hazard has been ruled out due to a groin injury while Willian is unlikely to be featuring as well. Pedro might be handed a start though and in the opposite flank, young Kenedy looks a good candidate.
Oscar was in the news recently for his training ground scuffle with Diego Costa but the Brazilian looks set to be handed a start as Chelsea do not have too many options in the attacking midfield position.
Loic Remy and Radamel Falcao have both been ruled out of the clash due to injuries and Diego Costa should also be provided with much needed rest.
That leaves loan return Patrick Bamford as the only option for Chelsea and there is no reason why Hiddink should be hesitant on starting with the talented attacker.
Via – Lineup Builder