Two ways Chelsea could lineup vs Crystal Palace amid N’Golo Kante and Marc Cucurella blows

Graham Potter will be looking to secure his first three points as Chelsea boss this weekend.

Chelsea travel to Crystal Palace on Saturday in what promises to be an entertaining London derby. The Blues are yet to play a Premier League game under new head coach Graham Potter, so the Blues boss will be eager to pick up the first win of his tenure.

The west Londoners currently sit seventh in the Premier League table, eight points behind early leaders, Arsenal. The international break will have given the former Brighton boss some time to conjure a plan to steer Chelsea back to winning ways, but Patrick Vieira’s Palace have proven to be a difficult team to break down during his time as the Eagles’ head coach.

Potter has a few injury issues to contend with, though. Marc Cucurella has been ruled out through illness, whilst N’Golo Kante isn’t ready to return to the fold just yet. Speaking about the two’s absence on Friday, Chelsea’s head coach said: “They’re fine in terms of coming through the rehab stages and ‘NG’ has been on the grass. Maybe next week for him. Bit of illness for Marc Cucurella.”

Potter also confirmed that youngster Carney Chukwuemeka is unavailable for the match at Selhurst Park. That being said, he still has plenty of options to choose from going into the game.

The Englishman used a 3-5-2 in the draw with RB Salzburg in September, but his Brighton outfit were known for being one of the most fluid in the division. Potter often chopped and changed tactics as well as personnel on a game-by-game basis and he may opt to do the same in west London.

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For much of last season, and in the few games he was in charge of Brighton for this campaign, Potter familiarised himself with variations of a 3-5-2 setup. That sometimes included a 3-5-1-1 in clashes against the so-called tougher opposition, whilst we witnessed an unorthodox 3-3-3-1 in the 2-1 opening day win over Manchester United. Meanwhile, a 3-4-2-1 has also been commonplace.

Another point of debate is at goalkeeper. Kepa Arrizabalaga was preferred in the Champions League and because he’s arguably better with his feet than Edouard Mendy, some have called for him to replace the Senegalese star in the starting line-up.

With that all in mind, let’s take a look at a couple of ways Chelsea could line up on Saturday.

3-5-2: Mendy; Koulibaly, Silva, Fofana; James, Kovacic, Mount, Jorginho, Chilwell; Sterling, Aubameyang.

3-4-2-1: Kepa, Koulibaly, Silva, Fofana; Chilwell, Jorginho, Kante, James; Sterling, Havertz; Aubameyang.


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