Chelsea managed to eliminate Leicester City in the EFL Cup third round on Tuesday night, but will now have to focus on the Premier League again as they face another difficult away fixture at Arsenal on Saturday.
Given Chelsea’s home loss to Liverpool last Friday, avoiding defeat at the Emirates Stadium will be Antonio Conte’s main priority.
Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois
The Belgian was rested against Leicester, but will now return to Chelsea’s starting eleven against Arsenal.
Left-back: Cesar Azpilicueta
Azpilicueta started the game against Leicester at this preferred right-back position, but is now likely to be moved back to the left side of the defense.
Central defenders: David Luiz and Gary Cahill
John Terry will probably recover in time to participate in the game, but Conte is unlikely to risk his captain from the start. Luiz and Cahill are likely to keep their places in the starting eleven, even though the Brazilian is still getting accustomed to Conte’s tactics and looked shaky against Leicester.
Right-back: Branislav Ivanovic
The Serbia international is likely to return to Chelsea’s starting eleven having been rested at the King Power Stadium.
Central midfielders: N’Golo Kante and Cesc Fabregas
Fabregas has been a peripheral figure in Conte’s team in the Premier League so far, but he earned his starting place against Arsenal with his great display on Tuesday. The Spaniard scored Chelsea’s two extra-time goals to rubber-stamp his team’s place in the fourth round of the EFL Cup. Chelsea need his creativity and he’s likely to be partnered in midfield by the returning N’Golo Kante.
Left winger: Eden Hazard
Hazard came on as a late substitute against Leicester to play in the extra time, but should be well rested for the Arsenal game. Hazard vs Bellerin will be an interesting duel as both of them are very quick and technically astute.
Attacking midfielder: Oscar
Oscar wasn’t in his team’s EFL Cup squad, but should be back in Chelsea’s starting eleven on Saturday.
Right winger: Willian
He was rested on Tuesday in order to be in top physical condition against Arsenal. He’ll definitely start on the right wing.
Striker: Diego Costa
Costa came on as a 67th-minute substitute against Leicester City and did well despite missing a couple of great chances to score. He’s been in great form since the start of the season and is one of the best players in the league right now. He could do serious damage against Arsenal’s defense.