After their impressive 2-0 FA Cup replay win over Birmingham City, the home side will be hoping to improve its Premier League form, and put the pressure on Arsenal in fourth.
Ivanovic, Terry, Luiz, Cole
Lampard, Ramires, Meireles
Sturridge, Drogba, Mata
Huth, Woodgate, Shawcross, Shotton
Whelan, Wilson, Whitehead, Etherington
Captain John Terry has described his recovery from knee surgery as "incredible" and could take a place in the starting lineup here.
After their impressive 1-0 win over Norwich City in their last match, Tony Pulis is unlikely to make many changes to his side. However, Andy Wilkinson was taken off with a hamstring injury against the Canaries, and may not be risked in the center of defense.
||DID YOU KNOW?|
- Chelsea’s Fernando Torres last scored on Oct. 19, 2011 against Genk in the Champions League, with his current barren spell standing at 23 matches in all competitions, and nearly 24 hours.
- Chelsea has won only three of its last 12 Premier League games, a run of form which cost former manager Anrde Villas-Boas his job.
- However, the Blues have lost just once at home in their last seven Premier League matches, when they were defeated 3-1 by Aston Villa on Dec. 31 thanks to goals from Stephen Ireland, Stiliyan Petrov and Darren Bent.
- Chelsea’s Florent Malouda and Salomon Kalou (pictured right) have enjoyed a great deal of scoring success in the Premier League against Stoke City, with three goals apiece.
- These two teams first met this season on the opening day, with the game ending in a 0-0 draw at the Britannia Stadium thanks to some resolute Stoke defending in a game of few clear chances.
- Chelsea has won all three of its previous encounters with Stoke at Stamford Bridge since the Potters' promotion, scoring 16 goals.
- After a run of four straight defeats in January, Stoke’s form has improved thanks to two straight wins over Swansea and Norwich City at the Britannia Stadium which have kept it in the top half of the table.
- Like its hosts, Stoke have enjoyed success in the FA Cup this season, reaching the quarterfinals thanks to a 2-0 victory away to Crawley Town. The Potters will face Liverpool in yet another away tie, their fourth in four rounds.
- Stoke’s Glenn Whelan recently became Stoke’s most-capped player of all-time in winning his 37th cap for the Republic of Ireland in a recent friendly against the Czech Republic. Whelan beat legendary goalkeeper Gordon Banks’ record, who made 36 appearances for England while with the Potters.
- Robert Huth began his career in English football with Chelsea, making his debut at the age of 17 in the 2001-02 season. In five years with the Blues, Huth made 42 appearances before moving to Middlesbrough and then on to Stoke.
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