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How could Chelsea lineup against Bournemouth

Raheem Sterling “ends drought”; Graham Potter announces two bad news after the match

Chelsea manager Graham Potter could be without no fewer than seven players when the Blues return to Premier League action against Bournemouth at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.

Hakim Ziyech and Mateo Kovacic are taking an extended break after reaching the semi-finals of the World Cup, while N’Golo Kante, Wesley Fofana, Ben Chilwell, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Armando Broja – who is out for the season after injuring his ACL in a winter friendly with Aston Villa – are confined to the treatment room.

Mason Mount (calf) and Kepa Arrizabalaga (foot) will also need late assessments, but the former is thought to have a good chance of being available, and Edouard Mendy can expect a start in goal if the latter is not passed fit.

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Kalidou Koulibaly and Thiago Silva will expect to come straight back into the three-man rearguard following the World Cup, potentially alongside Trevoh Chalobah, and Chelsea have been handed one piece of good news following the comeback of Reece James.

The defender has now fully recovered from a knee injury and could immediately be brought back in on the right-hand side, with Marc Cucurella seemingly nailed on to start at left-wing back.

A lack of midfield options will work in Conor Gallagher’s favour, with the Englishman set to start alongside Jorginho, although Denis Zakaria is also waiting patiently in the wings.

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Should Mount overcome a tight calf to make himself available, the playmaker should form an attacking trident with Raheem Sterling and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who scored against Bournemouth on Boxing Day for Arsenal in 2019.

Chelsea possible starting lineup vs Bournemouth:

Mendy; Chalobah, Silva, Koulibaly; James, Jorginho, Gallagher, Cucurella; Mount, Aubameyang, Sterling

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