Chelsea boss Frank Lampard nearly has a fully fit squad to choose from for their Champions League opening tie against Sevilla which could cause him a few selection headaches. Chelsea fans caught their first glimpse of Hakim Ziyech in a competitive match at the weekend after he came on to make his debut against Southampton.
Christian Pulisic also made his first start of the season in the 3-3 draw while Ben Chilwell has already impressed in his two Premier League games so far.
And Timo Werner finally got off the mark in the Premier League with a brace against Southampton.
Lampard now has an abundance of options as Chelsea kickstart their Champions League campaign with a tough tie against reigning Europa League champions Sevilla this evening.
A strong core has already emerged in Lampard’s starting line-up in the early stages of the season.
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Summer signings Werner and Kai Havertz have been ever-present for the Blues so far while N’Golo Kante has also started every game to date with Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic interchanging.
Pulisic may have only just returned to full fitness, but his form at the back-end of last season should see him soon establish a regular place in Lampard’s starting line-up.
In defence, Thiago Silva is expected to return after he was rested for the game at the weekend with Chilwell holding down the position on the left-side of defence.
But Lampard is yet to stick with the same line-up for two games in a row this season and he faces three big decisions on his team selection for the Sevilla tie with a huge game coming up at the weekend against Manchester United.
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Mason Mount has played big minutes for Chelsea this season but Ziyech’s return to full fitness casts doubt over his involvement against the La Liga side.
The 21-year-old is a firm favourite under Lampard, but the Chelsea boss may well look to keep him fresh for the game against United.
Cesar Azpilicueta has recently taken back his usual role as Chelsea’s starting right-back in recent weeks after Reece James was preferred to start the campaign.
Similarly to Mount, James has established himself as someone who Lampard trusts in big games and he’s impressed when he’s featured.
James also took the position at right-back in last season’s Champions League and performed well on the big stage.
But Lampard may well stick with Azpilicueta’s experience to help shore up Chelsea’s leaky backline against Sevilla.
Arguably Lampard’s biggest decision though will come with who he sticks in goal.
Edouard Mendy is reportedly going to be a game-time decision having missed the Southampton match with a thigh injury.
Kepa Arrizabalaga deputised in goal but he made another costly error which helped the Saints rescue a point.
Lampard has already proven that he’s not afraid to drop Kepa for Willy Caballero after Kepa makes a mistake.
If Mendy is deemed fit, Lampard’s decision is made that bit easer. But if it’s between Caballero or Kepa then the Chelsea boss may well have to go with the former.
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