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Chelsea take on Sheffield Wednesday in the fourth round of the FA Cup, with Maurizio Sarri expected to give some playing time to fringe stars.

The Blues won the Carabao Cup semi-final tie against Tottenham on Thursday to fix up a game against Manchester City for the first major silverware this season.

Sarri could field loan signing Gonzalo Higuain after the Argentine joined the Blues recently. Chelsea should start the tie as favourites, and playing at Stamford Bridge will provide us with a boost too.

The Blues then face Bournemouth in the Premier League in midweek.

Predicted Chelsea XI

Formation: 4-3-3

Manager: Maurizio Sarri

Willy Caballero (GK)

Kepa Arrizabalaga was the saviour in the shootout against Spurs, but Sarri should provide Caballero with the start on Sunday.

Davide Zappacosta (RB)

The Italian should get a run-out against the lower league side, and give Cesar Azpilicueta a break.

David Luiz (CB)

The Brazilian has been a rock at the back for Chelsea this season. There is no reason to replace Luiz now, even if Andreas Christensen returns to fitness.

Antonio Rudiger (CB)

Gary Cahill seems to be completely out of the picture, and we should keep Rudiger in the starting XI.

Emerson Palmieri (LB)

The Italian did a great job in the win over Spurs and should keep his place in the team ahead of Marcos Alonso.

Ethan Ampadu of Chelsea

Ethan Ampadu (CM)

The youngster deserves some game time in the first-team, and this would be the ideal opportunity to test him against the Championship opposition.

Ross Barkley (CM)

The Englishman has been in and out of the team this season, but he is expected to start on Sunday.

N’Golo Kante (CM)

Kante scored a triple-nutmeg goal against Spurs and should keep his place in the starting XI.

William (RW)

The Brazilian hasn’t been in great form in recent weeks. However, he should get the nod against Wednesday.

Gonzalo Higuain (ST)

The Argentine arrived a bit late to feature against Spurs, but he is ready to make his Chelsea debut on Sunday.

Read more: Chelsea consider replacing star player with £45million-rated Serie A defender

Callum Hudson-Odoi (LW)

The youngster should get a chance to impress against Wednesday, and it will be interesting to see how he performs on Sunday.


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ARTICLES

PL side interested in signing this out-of-favour Chelsea star in hot form

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West Ham United are interested in signing Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud in January. (GETTY Images)

Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud could move to West Ham United in January

An interview from Alex Crook of TalkSPORT (h/t Daily Star) revealed that West Ham United could be interested in signing Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud in the January transfer window.

Giroud recently netted 4 goals against Sevilla in Chelsea’s win 4-0 win in Seville, where he became the oldest player (h/t Daily Star) to score a UEFA Champions League hat-trick.

That game was only his second start of the season for Chelsea, and the Frenchman would have been dejected to hear Lampard say that it was still not enough to grant him a start against Leeds United. (h/t Daily Star)

Olivier Giroud has played second fiddle to Timo Werner and Tammy Abraham this season. (GETTY Images)
Olivier Giroud has played second fiddle to Timo Werner and Tammy Abraham this season. (GETTY Images)

It is now understood that Giroud could move to London club West Ham United in January in order to secure game time as the 2020 UEFA European Championship next summer draws near.

TalkSPORT insider Alex Crook said in an interview that West Ham United may hold the edge over Tottenham Hotspur, another club interested in signing Giroud, as the Hammers would not be considered a ‘direct rival’.

“I know there’s interest from West Ham United. David Moyes is a huge admirer of Giroud and clubs abroad as well. I suppose where West Ham would have the edge over someone like Tottenham for example, who have also shown an interest in the past, is that they wouldn’t be viewed as direct rivals.”

Olivier Giroud spent 5 and a half years at Arsenal before joining Chelsea. (GETTY Images)
Olivier Giroud spent 5 and a half years at Arsenal before joining Chelsea. (GETTY Images)

Giroud has been at Stamford Bridge for the past three and a half seasons where the Frenchman has netted 34 goals in nearly a 100 games.

Unfortunately for him, the 34-year-old has found starts at Chelsea few and far in between in recent years as he has started just twice for the Blues so far this season.

Giroud could also only muster 17 starts from 55 games last season for Chelsea, but Lampard indicated why he has chosen to keep him at the club as he praised him after the win against Sevilla.

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A View From The Bridge

Report: Chelsea still remain interested in £27m-rated Serie A star

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Chelsea still keen on Udinese goalkeeper Juan Musso

According to Italian outlet Mundo Udinese via Sport Witness (h/t Daily Star), Chelsea are still interested in Udinese goalkeeper Juan Musso, in spite of having signed Edouard Mendy in the summer.

The 26-year-old Musso came through the ranks at Racing Club in his homeland Argentina. After 34 first-team appearances, the custodian was snapped up by Udinese in the summer of 2018.

Since moving to Italy, Musso has racked up 76 appearances for Le Zebrette managing to secure 23 clean sheets in the process. The one-time capped Argentine international has featured in eight games this term, keeping two shut-outs.

Chelsea still interested in Juan Musso (Getty Images)
Chelsea still interested in Juan Musso (Getty Images)

The report claims that Musso had registered on the radars of Chelsea earlier this year when Kepa Arrizabalaga and Willy Caballero were struggling to nail down a place in the first-team.

However, the club did not pursue the Argentine in the summer. Instead, we ended up signing Edouard Mendy from Ligue 1 side Rennes. And the 28-year-old Senegalese has been a huge hit at the Bridge.

In 12 games across all competitions, Mendy has managed a highly-impressive nine clean sheets. With him in the side, the Chelsea defence has massively improved this season.

However, that hasn’t stopped Chelsea from monitoring Musso, who could be sold in the next summer transfer window. (h/t Daily Star)

Edouard Mendy has been spectacular for Chelsea
Edouard Mendy has been spectacular for Chelsea

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With the club understood to be ready to part ways with Kepa and Caballero touching 40, a new goalkeeper could be needed once the season ends.

And Musso, who is valued at around €30m (£27m), could be an intriguing option for the club to consider.

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A View From The Bridge

Chelsea loanee outlines ‘ultimate dream’ to make it big at Stamford Bridge

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Ike Ugbo

Ike Ugbo keen on forcing his way into Chelsea first-team setup

Speaking to Sport/Foot magazine (h/t Mirror), Chelsea youngster Ike Ugbo, who is currently on loan at Cercle Brugge, has claimed that he wants to force his way into the Blues’ first-team.

The 22-year-old striker has been with the Chelsea academy since 2007 and has risen through the ranks, impressing for the Under-18s as well as the Under-23s.

In 15 games for the Chelsea U-18 side, Ugbo has scored ten goals, while he has 15 strikes to his name in 34 gmaes for the U-23s. (h/t Transfermarkt)

Ike Ugbo is currently on loan at Cercle Brugge (Getty Images)
Ike Ugbo is currently on loan at Cercle Brugge (Getty Images)

However, he has never made a first-team appearance for us and instead, has been farmed out on loan constantly. Ugbo, till date, has had temporary stints at Barnsley, MK Dons, Scunthorpe United and Roda JC before signing for Cercle Brugge this past summer.

Since joining the Belgian outfit, Ugbo has fared quite well, racking up seven goals in 12 appearances. Cercle have an option to sign him for €5m, but the London-born centre-forward is determined to carve out a place for himself at the Bridge. (h/t Mirror)

“I’m a true Londoner and, in my eyes, Chelsea will always be the biggest club in the capital. Chelsea would be the ultimate dream. As a kid, I admired Didier Drogba and John Terry. It’s up to me to prove that I’m ready for an eventual return.”

Ike Ugbo Frank Lampard
Ike Ugbo wishes to make it big at Chelsea (Getty Images)

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Under Frank Lampard we’ve seen the likes of Tammy Abraham, Mason Mount and Reece James grow into key first-team players at the club. And there is no reason why Ugbo can’t do that himself, if he keeps up performing on loan.

With Olivier Giroud’s contract up in the summer, we will be in need of a new centre-forward and if the 22-year-old enjoys a strong season at Cercle, the club might not have to look elsewhere.

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Chelsea star reveals he was pushed by fellow countryman to join the Blues in the summer

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Kai Havertz revealed that international teammate Timo Werner texted him everyday to agree a deal with Chelsea. (GETTY Images)

Kai Havertz reveals Timo Werner pestered him to join Chelsea

Speaking in an interview with Chelsea’s YouTube channel (h/t Metro), new signing Kai Havertz revealed that Timo Werner texted him ‘everyday’ in a bid to convince him to join Frank Lampard’s Chelsea.

Chelsea signed Timo Werner from RB Leipzig in July 2020 after the Blues met his £50m buy-out clause.

Werner was thrilled at the prospect of Kai Havertz joining him at Chelsea and incessantly texted him to get him to Stamford Bridge.

It was not long after signing Werner that Chelsea agreed on a deal for Kai Haverz with Bayer Leverkusen.

Kai Havertz has impressed so far for Chelsea this season. (GETTY Images)
Kai Havertz has impressed so far for Chelsea this season. (GETTY Images)

Chelsea finalized a £71m fee with the Bundesliga club which saw the 21-year-old German International arrive at Cobham in September 2020.

Speaking in the interview, Havertz admitted that his friend Timo Werner already being at Chelsea made the move a lot easier for him. He also revealed how the 24-year-old striker texted him every day in order to get him to the club.

“It helped a lot. We know each other well from the national team. We’ve always been big friends. When I got the news that he would change [clubs] of course we messaged like every day. He always said to me, ‘come, come!’, it was like every day.”

Havertz also mentioned how he is close to the German-speaking players at the club while also mentioning how learning English has helped him have cordial relationships with everyone in the squad.

Kai Havertz and Timo Werner share a great relationship on and off the field. (GETTY Images)
Kai Havertz and Timo Werner share a great relationship on and off the field. (GETTY Images)

Kai Havertz has had a good start to his Blues career. Despite missing almost a month of football due to testing positive for Covid-19, the young German star has still managed 4 goals and 3 assists in his 13 Chelsea appearances this season. (h/t Metro)

Chelsea are 3rd in the Premier League table, trailing both Tottenham and Liverpool by 2 points, as we welcome Leeds United at Stamford Bridge. It will be an interesting clash as the Whites have shown their quality this season.

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