Chelsea expected 3-4-3 V Southampton: 28-year-old returns in three changes
By Russell Edge
Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is expected to restore Eden Hazard, Diego Costa and Gary Cahill to his starting XI in their match against Southampton on Tuesday, after resting the trio in their FA Cup win over Tottenham.
Hazard appeared as a substitute to help Chelsea earn a 4-2 victory over North London side Spurs, scoring a goal and setting up Nemanja Matic for his wonder strike.
Costa and Cahill meanwhile were rested completely, as Chelsea look to secure a domestic double in the shape of the Premier League title and the FA Cup.
The three are expected to return to the starting XI against Southampton, Costa replacing Belgian forward Michy Batshuayi, Hazard taking the place of Spanish winger Pedro and Cahill replacing Nathan Ake.
Cahill is expected to line up alongside David Luiz and Cesar Azpilicueta in a three man defence, with Thibaut Courtois retaining his place after recovering from injury.
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Brazilian midfielder Willian is expected to retain his place after scoring a brace against Tottenham at Wembley, with Marcus Alonso and Victor Moses continuing to operate as wing backs in Conte’s 3-4-3 formation.
Chelsea currently head the Premier League table, four points ahead of Tottenham in second, and Antonio Conte will be expecting top class performances from each of his players as he looks to secure a league title in his first season in England.
Southampton meanwhile sit in ninth on 40 points and are looking to return to winning ways after suffering a disappointing 3-0 defeat at home to Manchester City.
In other Chelsea news, Frank Lampard criticised Mauricio Pochettino’s team selection in their defeat to the Blues.