Chelsea face Wolves in Tuesday’s Premier League clash looking to bounce back from defeat to Everton at the weekend. Frank Lampard has Christian Pulisic back from injury to boost his attacking options, but Hakim Ziyech and Callum Hudson-Odoi are still out. Express Sport has picked the likely line-up for the clash at Molineux.
Goalkeeper – Mendy
Eduoard Mendy has now made mistakes in successive games after his challenge on Dominic Calvert-Lewin led to Everton scoring the only goal from a penalty on Saturday.
The Senegalese keeper was also at fault for Leeds’ early goal the previous weekend, although Chelsea roared back to win that one 3-1.
Lampard defended Mendy following his error against Everton, and the 28-year-old is still No1 after keeping nine clean sheets in 13 games this season.
It will take more than such a blip for Lampard to reinstate the error-prone Kepa Arrizabalaga, and Mendy will be hoping to be back to his best against Wolves.
Defence – James, Zouma, Thiago, Chilwell
Veteran centre-back Thiago Silva was also criticised for his part in Chelsea giving away a penalty against Everton, and along with Mendy had also been partly responsbible for Leeds’ goal the weekend before.
But like Mendy, Silva has had a transformative effect on the Blues’ defence this season, using his experience to help make Lampard’s side one of the meanest in the Premier League.
Kurt Zouma was also not at his best against Everton but is set to continue alongside Silva, with Reece James and Ben Chilwell as full-backs.
James and Chilwell will have their hands full dealing with Wolves’ widemen Pedro Neo and Adama Traore – but will also offer their usual threat down the flanks when Chelsea have possession.
Midfield – Kante, Mount, Havertz
N’Golo Kante was one of Chelsea’s better players against Everton and looks set to keep his place for the game against Wolves.
Mason Mount is also likely to continue, with Lampard a huge admirer of the England man’s talent and work rate.
With Pulisic back from injury to boost Lampard’s attacking options, the manager faces a decision over whether to stick with Kai Havertz after his poor game against Everton.
Lampard could be tempted to take the former Bayer Leverkusen man out of the firing line, but the manager has urged fans to keep faith in the 21-year-old and could play him in an attacking midfield role, with Mateo Kovacic potentially the man to miss out.
Attack – Pulisic, Giroud, Werner
Pulisic is back in the squad following a thigh injury, and Lampard could be tempted to throw him straight back into the action after Chelsea’s attack struggled at Goodison Park.
The USA international could line up on the right of the front three, with Timo Werner retaining his place on the opposite flank.
Olivier Giroud did not hit the heights of his recent retutn to form in Saturday’s defeat, but will hope to hold off Tammy Abraham to keep his place as the focal point of Chelsea’s attack.
Expected Chelsea XI vs Wolves in full: Mendy; James, Zouma, Thiago, Chilwell; Kante, Mount, Havertz; Werner, Giroud, Pulisic.