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Chelsea will have to pick themselves up and dust off the humiliation from their recent goalless draw against Leicester City as they get set to host Norwich City in the FA Cup on Wednesday. The Canaries will travel to Stamford Bridge looking to take advantage of the club’s recent slump in form. They are now without a goal in their last 3 games and that is hardly what one would expect from the Premier League’s defending champions.
The last time these two clubs met, the result was a stalemate but Chelsea will have a chance for redemption in the upcoming encounter.
It is still unclear as to when Ross Barkley will be included in the starting lineup but it is unlikely that Conte would choose to start him against Norwich. Resting the regular starters will be a priority for this game and that should see the likes of Willy Caballero, Danny Drinkwater and David Luiz get opportunities.
Willy Caballero (GK)
Caballero managed to maintain a clean sheet in their previous encounter against Norwich and that could prompt Conte to utilise him once more. Also, he will need to rest Thibaut Courtois, thus increasing Caballero’s chances of getting selected.
David Luiz (CB)
Although he was benched for the game against Arsenal, Luiz could find himself back in the starting lineup against Norwich. His experience could prove to be vital against the Championship side.
Antonio Rudiger (CB)
Rudiger has been quite decent whenever he has started for Chelsea this season and he brings about a sense of solidity at the back and that is something the Blues will need on Wednesday.
Andreas Christensen (CB)
Cahill suffered an injury against Leicester City, making it unlikely for Conte to deploy him. Hence, we could see Christensen in the starting lineup against Norwich City.
Davide Zappacosta (RWB)
Zappacosta showed promising signs in the previous encounter against Norwich and he could be handed a start here against the Canaries.
Kenedy lacked power going forward in the previous game against Norwich but he was quite solid defensively and that is likely to earn him a spot in this game as well.
N’Golo Kante (CM)
Since this is an important must-win match for Chelsea, Conte might deploy Kante instead of Bakayoko since the former Monaco star failed to impress in the previous match.
Danny Drinkwater (CM)
Drinkwater should partner Kante at the heart of the midfield and this could end up being a good decision since the duo worked wonders at Leicester.
Conte might be inclined to provide Hazard with some rest, thus opening up scope for Pedro to take up duty on the left-wing. He really needs to improve his passing and a lot will rest on him on Wednesday.
Conte is highly likely to include Willian on the right-wing after his strong display in the previous match. His creativity and incisive runs provided some much-needed power for Chelsea and that will be crucial against Norwich this time.
Michy Batshuayi (CF)
Batshuayi is in a very precarious situation since his Chelsea future is quite uncertain. Although he is likely to be included, it is important that he gets his name on the scoresheet this time.