Chelsea team news: Injuries, suspensions and line-up vs Leicester City

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The last two teams to win the Premier League title face each other on Saturday as the Blues welcome the Foxes to west London

Chelsea are undefeated in their last nine matches but after three straight draws will be determined to get back to winning ways against Leicester.

The champions of England are 16 points behind leaders Manchester City and have little chance of retaining their crown.

Chelsea had a midweek clash against Arsenal in the Carabao Cup, so Claude Puel's side have had longer to prepare for the match having had a free midweek. Leicester had started well under Puel but have suffered a few disappointing results over the winter period. 


CHELSEA INJURIES


Ross Barkley has been training with Chelsea's first team but is being eased back into things after seven months out. It isn't clear when Conte will use his new £15 million signing.

David Luiz returned from injury against Norwich City last week but he was put back on the bench in Chelsea's midweek cup tie against Arsenal. 

Charly Musonda has also made a full recovery from a foot complaint that saw him miss out in much of December and he came off the bench against Norwich.

Eden Hazard has also recovered from a knock to his calf that saw him sit out the third round FA Cup tie completely, but he played against the Gunners. 

Chelsea are thought to have no other injury worries ahead of this weekend's match. Baba Rahman seems to be inching towards a loan move return to Schalke after a long-term knee injury.

Ross Barkley Chelsea


CHELSEA SUSPENSIONS


Chelsea have no players currently suspended. The Premier League rules also now state that 10 yellow cards are needed to earn a ban for accumulation, with the 19-game deadline passed by all clubs in the league.  


POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UP


Conte has hinted at his unhappiness with recent results as Chelsea have failed to score in their last two matches, both of which have ended goalless. The 3-5-2 formation that sees Hazard link up with Alvaro Morata had been working well but they have started to struggle for goals in recent times.

Willian and Pedro may both have a chance to break back into the side but Michy Batshuayi is less likely to start.

Gary Cahill will likely return after being given a full rest against Arsenal and Conte might be tempted to turn back to 3-4-3, which puts an extra forward on the pitch. Tiemoue Bakayoko may return for Danny Drinkwater, who has started the last two games for Chelsea. 

Chelsea will likely use a stronger line up against Leicester and then rest players against Norwich in the FA Cup on Wednesday. 

CHELSEA XI


LEICESTER TEAM NEWS


Claude Puel has a few injuries to contend with in his defence for the trip to Chelsea. Leicester captain Wes Morgan and Danny Simpson both have hamstring injuries and are unlikely to be available. 

Robert Huth is nearing a return after having ankle surgery by playing in Leicester's U23 matches but he is unlikely to start against his former club.

Jamie Vardy missed Leicester's FA Cup clash against Fleetwood Town but he could return from his recent groin injury. 

Jamie Vardy Leicester Tottenham


TV CHANNEL & KICK OFF TIME


The match takes place at 15:00 GMT on Saturday afternoon but the match won't be broadcasted live in the UK.


BEST OPTA MATCH FACTS


  • Davide Zappacosta (who had no goals or assists in his first 11 Premier League games) has come off the bench to either score or assist a goal in each of his last two league appearances.

  • Riyad Mahrez has been directly involved in 14 goals (7 goals, 7 assists) after 22 Premier League games this season; nine more than he had managed after as many games in 2016-17 (five - three goals, two assists).

  • Since August 2014, Jamie Vardy has scored more Premier League goals against ‘big six’ opposition than any other player (22 goals in 41 apps).

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  • The Foxes are winless in their last 12 away Premier League games against ‘big six’ opposition (W0 D3 L9) – losing each of the last five.

  • Antonio Conte has won 25 of his opening 30 home Premier League games as manager, no boss in the competition has won more of their opening 30. Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti also won 25, with Mourinho drawing and Ancelotti losing their 31st home games in charge.

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