Chelsea have league matches against Tottenham, Manchester United, and Liverpool in the next five league matches. It is imperative that we head into these matches with a healthy lead at the top of the table and, most crucially, a lot of confidence. The match against Norwich City presents a great opportunity for it, as Chris Hughton’s side come into this match still searching for their first league win of the season.
Norwich have scored just one goal away from home and they come on the back of a 5-2 hammering at home to Liverpool. Hence, Chelsea are the undisputed favourites to win the match and extend the unbeaten streak to seven league matches.
Underestimating the opponents is one of the biggest concerns ahead of a match like this. The Chelsea manager Roberto di Matteo said,
“Every time you play in the league after a Champions League game you have to be mentally focused on the game, and the last game before an international break was not good. So it is the mental aspect of it that is important.”
After being rested for the midweek Champions League match against Nordsjaelland, John Terry is expected to come back into the side. Di Matteo has confirmed that Daniel Sturridge is the only absentee for Chelsea. Anthony Pilkington and Sebastien Bassong are the two players unavailable for Norwich.
Norwich manager Chris Hugton said,
“I think they’re a little bit more adventurous than last season. It’s a tough place to go, you’ve just got to make sure you set up the team the way you need to and give a good account of yourselves.”
Di Matteo has been making subtle changes to the squad in order to freshen things up. It is possible to expect a few changes to the team on Saturday as well. It will not be a surprise if the new right back Cesar Azpilicueta makes his first start in the Premier League.
Eden Hazard has gone off the boil in the last few matches. It will be interesting to see if he returns to form against Norwich.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Cech, Azpilicueta, Terry, Luiz, Cole, Lampard, Mikel, Mata, Oscar, Hazard, Torres
Norwich (4-4-2): Ruddy, Martin, Turner, Barnett, Garrido, Snodgrass, Howson, Johnson, Surman, Morrison, Jackson
Kick-off: 15:00 (BST) at Stamford Bridge