Chelsea head into this game still miraculously 3rd in the table. Saturday night it felt that the next time we played we would be 5th in the table but Leicester lost and United drew which mean that we still remain a point above the two. The teams also now have the information that City will be playing Champions League football next season as they lost their appeal but only got a fine as they were found guilty of FFP but only charged 10 million. This means that 5th will not be enough for CL football and the teams will have to finish in the top four. We now welcome already relegated Norwich to the Bridge as we look to bounce back from our loss and go 4 points clear of 4th. Norwich have had a poor season and it’s all gone downhill after their win against Man City. Their offensive style of football while a good idea was not suited to the Premier League with the players they have and so their openness at the back cost them time and time again. Farke needs to rebuild and hope for a quick bounce back next season.
Post Sheffield United Lampard really questioned the mentality of the players and he became the 3rd manager after Conte and Sarri to do so. There is something about this group that when we need to win the most we just can’t. Lampard has stated that this is something that he as been working on trying to build in the team. Lampard also said that there was no time to dwell on the result as they had a hectic fortnight ahead and they needed a quick bounce back. Post lockdown Norwich have lost all 7 of their games conceding 17 goals and scoring 2 and so there are no excuses for the squad for this one. It has to be a win and it has to be big. We have the quality to beat Norwich and we did so in the reverse fixture when we won that game 2-3. At the time Norwich were slightly better and one hopes Chelsea are much improved since then.
Chelsea Team Preview
Lampard stated that Chelsea will be without Kante for the game while Christensen was back in contention. I expect Kepa to start in goal with Reece and Azpilicueta as the full backs. Zouma should continue in defence and I would actually start Tomori if he is fit. Kovacic should replace Jorginho as the CDM while Mount continues up front but Barkley should be rested for Loftus-Cheek. Pulisic should continue on the right while Hudson-Odoi should come in on the left to give Willian a rest. I would start Giroud up front. Plenty of quality on the pitch to win this game.
Norwich Team Preview
There are no injury concerns for Norwich as Farke has nothing to lose in this game. The main threats from Norwich are Buendia, Cantwell and Pukki even though he hasn’t scored since last year. It would be typical Chelsea to gift him a goal. Lewis and Aarons can also pose a threat from their full back positions.
Starting XI Prediction
The players and Lampard will know that with our next game at Liverpool beating Norwich is the only outcome Chelsea can have in this game. The football gods were kind on us during the weekend and we need to take advantage of it. COME ON YOU BLUES!!!