Chelsea Team News: Injuries, suspensions & line-up vs Everton

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Everything you need to know ahead of Sunday's huge match with the Premier League title on the line - as the Blues travel to Merseyside

Chelsea have made an incredible comeback since their defeat to Manchester United after winning 4-2 in an FA Cup semi-final against Tottenham and earning all three points versus Southampton on Tuesday.

Conte hints at Serie A return

Tottenham responded to their cup defeat with an away win against Crystal Palace in the league on Wednesday and they have ensured that the title race is alive on Sunday as Chelsea face Everton at Goodison Park. The gap at the top of the league is now back to four points.

Mauricio Pochettino's side might have their best chance to close the gap this weekend, as it is Chelsea's toughest remaining fixture, but Spurs welcome Arsenal immediately after Chelsea's game in the North London derby. 


CHELSEA INJURIES


Gary Cahill made his triumphant return against Southampton by scoring a crucial goal for his team, only days after being hospitalised due to his gallbladder condition flaring up badly.

The stand-in captain has had the illness all through his career but suffered one of his worst bouts of pain ahead of the Tottenham cup game. Nathan Ake successfully covered for Cahill in the cup but he is expected to be back for the remainder of the season.

Chelsea loanees battle for title

Chelsea have no injury concerns ahead of their trip to Everton, although Thibaut Courtois has been playing through the pain barrier with an ankle injury that he sustained in a commercial shoot for the NBA. 

David Luiz has been having ongoing treatment on a knee injury he sustained from Sergio Aguero's red card tackle in December. Cesar Azpilicueta has mostly recovered from his broken hand and had been playing in a cast for weeks.

Gary Cahill Chelsea Premier League


CHELSEA SUSPENSIONS


Chelsea have no players suspended for the match and have had few issues with discipline all season. John Terry has been their only player to be sent off, in the FA Cup against Peterborough United.

The cut-off points for accumulations of 10 yellow cards passed two weeks ago and Chelsea avoided any of their players being banned. Diego Costa and N'Golo Kante reached 10 bookings after the cut-off point. 

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CHELSEA POTENTIAL STARTING LINE-UP


Antonio Conte sprung a surprise on Tottenham last weekend by resting Eden Hazard and Diego Costa, as he used Michy Batshuayi and Willian instead. It was one of his most surprising Chelsea line-ups of the season, as he uncharacteristically rotated his team. 

Batshuayi hadn't started since January while Ake, who also came in, hadn't started for Chelsea since February. Conte went back to his strongest line-up against Southampton with only two-and-a-half days between games.  

'Lukaku is better than Costa'

Conte has increasingly used a 3-5-2 formation in recent weeks but it is only a slight variation on the 3-4-3 system that he is best known for using this season. He may opt for more rotation versus Everton with Pedro likely to come back into the line up after being rested in favour of Cesc Fabregas. 

However, it has been most typically Nemanja Matic who has competed for a spot in central midfielder with Fabregas this season, while Willian and Pedro have been battling over the right forward position. Conte has used the same core of 14 players all season and any changes for Everton will be minor tweaks rather than radical overhauls.

Chelsea GFX


EVERTON TEAM NEWS


Seamus Coleman remains out with a broken leg that he sustained facing Wales with his the Republic of Ireland. Ramiro Funes Mori tore the meniscus in his knee with Argentina in the same international break, one month ago and remains out. 

Yannick Bolasie is out with a cruciate ligament injury for a long spell and isn't close to a return. James McCarthy is out with a hamstring injury and has no return date set. 

Aaron Lennon and Muhamed Besic are close to a return but it is unlikely that Ronald Koeman will use his two players from the start after a long-term absence. Therefore, Everton go into the game with a much longer injury list than their rivals. 

Seamus Coleman Ireland Wales WC Qualifier


BEST OPTA MATCH FACTS


  • Everton have won five of their last seven Premier League games against Chelsea at Goodison Park (L2), two more than they recorded in their previous 17 in the competition.

  •  Diego Costa has been directly involved in six goals in four Premier League appearances against Everton (four goals, two assists).

  • Romelu Lukaku has failed to score in all five of his previous outings against his former club Chelsea in the Premier League, attempting 12 shots (incl. blocks) in the process.


TV COVERAGE & KICK-OFF TIME


The game is being shown at 14.05 on Sky Sports 1 live in the UK on Sunday afternoon.

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