A tough derby.
Football is back after yet another international break as Chelsea travel to newly promoted team Brentford on Saturday. Brentford qualified through the play offs and had been nearly there’s in terms of promotion for many seasons. Thomas Frank has got them playing good football over the last few seasons and in a new stadium they have hit the ground running in the Premier League season. Brentford currently sit 7th in the table having won 3 drawn 3 and lost 1. Brentford have beaten West Ham, drawn with Liverpool, and beaten Arsenal amongst others. The loss came against Brighton who are also doing extremely well this season. Brentford really do seem to have that give their all attitude and seem to have no fear going into games. The home crowd is also loud and supportive and the atmosphere they create for games is electric as was seen against Arsenal, and Liverpool. A tough trip for sure.
Chelsea go into this game having beaten Southampton 3-1 before the international break. We ended MW 7 as the league leaders and having played Arsenal, Spurs, Man City, and Liverpool we now have a run of fixtures that we need to win. Title winning campaigns are built on these sort of runs for example the 13 game winning streak under Conte. Tuchel and co have done well having played 4 of the traditional top 6 teams and with the only one left being United. After those fixtures we find ourselves top and now the onus is on the squad and the players to get the ball rolling. Of course no game is easy in the Premier League and teams like Brighton, West Ham, Brentford, Villa, Everton etc are all teams that are also challenging for European places and are well coached. Besides that though the fact is that we play 5 league games before the international break comes around again and 4 of those games are against the bottom 4. It is time for this Chelsea team to go on a winning run, that hopefully we started against Southampton.
Chelsea Team Preview
Tuchel will be without Thiago Silva, Rudiger, Pulisic, and maybe Ziyech who is a slight doubt. Mendy will be in goal and I expect a back three of Azpilicueta, Christensen, and Chalobah. Reece James, and Chilwell should start as the wing backs with Kante, and Loftus-Cheek in the midfield. Hudson-Odoi, Werner,and Lukaku should start up top. I think a lot of these players had the two weeks off internationally and they will be given the chance to impress once again. Hudson-Odoi, and Loftus-Cheek did particularly well against Southampton. The likes of Mount, Havertz etc could start but I think they are more likely to come off the bench having played internationally. It’s a strong team and with the likes of Mbuemo, Toney, etc we will need pace and strength in our midfield and defence to solve those situations. Lukaku has been a little goal shy in the last few games and it will be good to see him get on the score sheet again along with Werner continuing his goal scoring run having scored for Germany as well. Loftus-Cheek and Kante will be an interesting dynamic to watch as well.
Brentford Team Preview
Brentford and Frank have a fit squad to select from. Brentford also play a back three in these sort of games and have quite a lot of energy in their press etc which gives teams problems. Raya is a decent goalkeeper, while Ajer, Jansson, and Pinnock should form their back three. Canos and Henry play as their wing backs although Canos is more a creative winger. Onyeka, Norgaard, and Janelt play in the middle of the park and offer that mix of steel, and progression that is needed. Mbeumo, and Toney form the partnership up front. Mbeumo is the Anelka to Toney’s Drogba. Toney works a lot off the ball and is a constant menace on the pitch while Mbeumo helps in creating and finishing the chances. Brentford work as a proper team. Off the bench one of the biggest threats is Wissa who has made a name by coming on and grabbing crucial goals.
Starting XI Prediction
Brentford are tough opponents and on these late kickoffs under the flood lights they have shown they can get a result against the likes of Liverpool. Tuchel and team will have to be at their best and will have to want the win more than Brentford. It’s going to be a hard fought and entertaining game but I believe in Chelsea and it’s time to go on a run! COME ON CHELSEA!!!