By 90Min
January 30, 2018

A full schedule of Premier League fixtures in midweek sees Chelsea host an AFC Bournemouth side who are unbeaten in three league games.

Chelsea will be hoping to keep up the pressure on those above them and avoid slipping out of the top four, while Bournemouth will be hoping they can cause an upset to aid them in their relegation battle.

Here is what you need to know ahead of the encounter at Stamford Bridge:


Previous Encounter

BEN STANSALL/GettyImages

Bournemouth have only beaten Chelsea twice in their history, with Chelsea winning the last five matches between the two. Bournemouth, however, were unlucky not to get more from the last meeting.

The two sides last met in the League Cup fifth round, with an early Willian goal putting Chelsea ahead. The game then sparked into life in the dying embers, with Dan Gosling equalising in the 90th minute and seemingly taking the game to extra time. However, to Bournemouth's despair Chelsea scored nearly instantly, with Alvaro Morata with a late winner. 

This win took Chelsea to the semi-final of the competition, and Bournemouth will be hoping for revenge on Wednesday.


Key Battle


Eden Hazard vs Adam Smith

Ian Walton/GettyImages

Eden Hazard is the catalyst for almost everything Chelsea do. He is pivotal in most attacks and when he is on form, you know you are in for a tough afternoon. 

With eight goals in the league already this season, Bournemouth will be well aware of what Hazard can do, and will have him down as one to watch.

Right-sided player Adam Smith is likely to be given the difficult task of keeping the Belgian quiet. If he manages to prevent Hazard cutting inside and causing havoc, Bournemouth will have a decent chance of getting something from the game.


Team News

Chelsea's injury list will shorten ahead of the game in midweek with both Thibaut Courtois and Cesc Fabregas expected to be back in the side. 

Alvaro Morata and Willian are both expected to remain sidelined along with David Luiz, who picked up an ankle injury in training last week.

Eddie Howe will welcome the return of Harry Arter who will return to the squad following an illness. There are no fresh injury worries for Bournemouth, with Jermain Defore and Tyrone Mings the only absentees through long term injury.

Potential Chelsea Starting Lineup: Courtois; Zappacosta, Azpilicueta, Christensen, Cahill, Alonso, Fabregas, Kante, Pedro, Batshuayi, Hazard


Potential Bournemouth Starting Lineup: Begovic; Smith, Francis, S.Cook, Ake, Daniels, L.Cook, Gosling, Ibe, Fraser, Wilson


Prediction

Despite Bournemouth's recent unbeaten run, it is difficult to see them getting anything from a game against a side with such quality. 

If they can keep the likes of Hazard and Pedro quiet Bournemouth might have a chance, but that is no easy task.

A win would consolidate Chelsea's place in the Champions League places, and condemn Bournemouth to being dragged back into the relegation dog-fight.

Prediction: Chelsea 3-1 Bournemouth

You May Like