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Southampton v Chelsea

Chelsea team news: Christensen & Zappacosta return as Barkley makes the bench

11:37 BST 14/04/2018
Andreas Christensen Chelsea
The Blues travel to St Mary's looking to revive their chances of sealing a place in next season's Champions League

Antonio Conte has made two changes to the Chelsea starting XI heading into Saturday's Premier League clash against Southampton, with Andreas Christensen and Davide Zappacosta returning to the team.

Christensen was an unused substitute in last week's win over West Ham but will make his 25th Premier League appearances at St Mary's as he replaces Antonio Rudiger to partner Cesar Azpilicueta and Gary Cahill in the three-man defence.

Zappacosta, meanwhile, makes his first appearance since the Champions League elimination at the hands of Barcelona last month and lines up on the right flank in place of Victor Moses.

Southampton coach Mark Hughes has been forced into one alteration to the side that was beaten 3-2 by Arsenal last week. Jack Stephens' red card against the Gunners leaves him suspended and allows defender Jan Bednarek to make his first Premier League appearance since joining from Lech Poznan.

The Saints continue to struggle in the English top flight as they sit third from bottom, three points from safety and on a three-game losing streak. 

However, Conte's Chelsea have been in poor form of late, dropping to fifth and 10 points behind the last Champions League spot with three losses and a draw from their last six matches in the competition.

Southampton starting XI: McCarthy, Cedric, Bednarek, Hoedt, Yoshida, Bertrand, Romeu, Ward-Prowse, Tadic, Hojbjerg, Long.

Bench: Forster, McQueen, Lemina, Boufal, Sims, Austin, Gabbiadini.

Chelsea starting XI: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill; Zappacosta, Kante, Fabregas, Alonso; Willian, Morata, Hazard.

Bench: Caballero, Moses, Emerson, Bakayoko, Barkley, Pedro, Giroud.