West Brom v Chelsea preview: It's a big game for Cesc Fabregas
By Tony Hughes
Football Insider gives the lowdown on the Sunday lunchtime Premier League clash with our look at the line-ups, players to watch, form guide and statistics in your essential Chelsea v West Brom preview.
KICK-OFF TIME: Sunday, 1.30pm
TV: Live on Sky Sports 1
IT’S A BIG GAME FOR…
Cesc Fabregas. The Spanish maestro has a reputation for starting seasons far better than he finishes them but the conductor of the Chelsea orchestra has mislaid his baton in the opening weeks of the season. Average against Swansea, he was exposed against Manchester City as his tactical indiscipline enabled the home team to ruthlessly home in on the champions’ weaknesses. Chelsea badly need back the pass master and assist-meister of 2014/15. Soon. Very soon.
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PLAYER TO WATCH…
John Terry. Will we be watching him on the pitch directing operations or sat impassively in the stands wondering how on earth he fits into Jose Mourinho’s masterplan of how Chelsea will retain their Premier League title. The likelihood is that the skipper will be given the opportunity to make amends for his role in the City debacle but all eyes will be on whether the legs can still keep up with one of the finest defensive minds of the modern era.
PAST THREE MEETINGS…
Premier League: West Brom 3 (Berahino 2, Brunt) Chelsea 0, May 2015
Premier League: Chelsea 2 (Costa, Hazard) West Brom 0, November 2014
Premier League: West Brom 1 (Anichebe) Chelsea 1 (Ivanovic), February 2014
Jose Mourinho claimed his team “couldn’t cope” after their title ambitions were dealt a blow with a 1-1 draw at the Hawthorns two seasons ago.
Chelsea in 2015/16: D, L
West Brom in 2015/16: L, D
Draw – 3/1 (Sporting Bet)
HOW WILL THEY LINE UP…
Chelsea (possible): Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Matic, Zouma; Pedro, Fabregas, Hazard; Costa.
West Brom (possible): Myhill; Olsson, Dawson, McAuley, Brunt; Morrison, Yacob, Fletcher, Gardner; Berahino, Lambert.
EXPERT VERDICT… Chelsea back to winning ways with a narrow victory