Jose Mourinho and his men got a week off with no mid-week football and it is not hard to say that the club and players will welcome the break alike. The club held on to a dull draw against Tottenham Hotspur and will try to get all three point from this relatively easy fixture against newly promoted Bournemouth.
AFC Bournemouth played a scintillating game against Everton last weekend as they fought hard to get a point in the 3-3 thriller at home. They will now face a tougher fixture against Champions Chelsea who are in need of all three points every chance they get. Read on for the Preview, Team News, Expected Lineups and Betting Odds.
The Chelsea vs Bournemouth match will be played on Saturday the 5th of December at the Stamford Bridge in London. The kick off is scheduled at 5:30 pm BST (11:00 pm IST).
The biggest news for Jose Mourinho will be the return of Thibaut Courtois after injury. He will take his place in between the poles against Bournemouth on Saturday. Loic Remy and John Terry along with Falcao are still absent for the Blues while Diego Costa was seen partying late Thursday night and will surely not be started. Hazard was used as a false 9 against Tottenham and the manager may continue with the same formation in this game.
In terms of the visitors, they could be without a whole host of players for the trip to the capital, as Adam Federici, Marc Pugh, Harry Arter and Artur Boruc are all injury doubts. Christian Atsu will certainly miss out against his parent club as per his loan agreement, but it is between the sticks that Howe will be particularly worried due to the potential absence of Federici and Boruc. It could mean that Ryan Allsop is handed a first Premier League start, with Jordan Holmes – fresh on the back of a loan stint at Southern Premier side Weymouth – providing cover on the bench.
Courtois; Ivanovic, Cahill, Zouma, Azpilicueta; Fabregas, Matic; Willian, Oscar, Pedro; Hazard
Allsop; Smith, Francis, Distin, Daniels; Ritchie, Gosling, Surman, King, Stanislas; Murray
Hazard vs Francis:
Eden Hazard was impressive in the previous game against he Spurs when he played as striker, leading his team’s attacking line. The Belgian is one of the best players in the Premier League and on his day can blow Bournemouth away. Francis will have to stay tight and read his game all night if the y want to get out of this game with a result.
Murray vs Zouma:
Kurt Zouma has at times been solid at the back for Chelsea but has also been mistake prone this season. He is often caught out of position and is usually found wanting even in physical battles. He will have hs work cut out when he faces the likes of Murray who is strong and quick. Mourinho will have to line his team up well if they want to come away with all three points from this game.
AFC Bournemouth: 17/2
This may be the best time for Chelsea to play a newly promoted side. They will want to put in a strong shift and take away all three points against Eddie Howie’s team but will have to work a bit hard in their present form.
Chelsea 2-0 AFC Bournemouth