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Chelsea vs Southampton: Preview

After a brief spell in the sunshine, Chelsea’s form has once again slipped back under the dark clouds after the recent 2-1 defeat against Porto. Jose Mourinho may claim that ‘unfortunate incidents’ may be the reason for this poor form, but Chelsea are truly a shadow of the team that won the league last season. Chances are no longer being created at will, while the defence has been exposed in a number of ways. Hope, however, still remains ahead of the home game against Southampton.

Mourinho has to make some crucial decisions with regard to team selection. This would be not only important for a victory but for Mourinho to remain in the job as well. No one is immune from the sack at Chelsea and Roman Abramovich has the power to lower the axe if poor form persists. It is rather strange that Mourinho does not sack some of his underperforming players.

Branislav Ivanovic is fast becoming the most unpopular player at Chelsea and he is not being helped by Mourinho’s decision to stick with him even when he is clearly going through his worst form ever. Almost every goal conceded by Chelsea has an air of ‘Brana’s fault’ around it. Yet, he not only retains his place in the team but has also been made the captain in place of John Terry. After shipping two more goals against Porto, it remains to be seen if Terry will be brought back to the starting spot.

Southampton may no longer possess the form of last season, but they still remain a very tough team to face. They have turned around from the 3-2 defeat against Manchester United and have now won back-to-back matches in all competitions. They play a high tempo and intense pressing game that proved very difficult for Chelsea in the game against Newcastle United. Last week, the blues struggled to beat a team that is yet to win a league match this season. Only time will tell if things would improve against a team with a similar style of football.

Team News:

Diego Costa will serve the last of his three match suspension and he will be unavailable. Loic Remy or Radamel Falcao will start the game. Thibaut Courtois remains out until the first week of December.

Mourinho has promised some rotation from the team that started against Porto.

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