Chelsea head to Leicester on Monday night looking to get back to winning ways in the league against the current table-toppers. With the Foxes in fantastic form, it’s going to take a huge performance to get a win at the King Power, but it’s something the Blues need if they are to have any hope of making the top four.
The manager has close to a full squad available for this one, with only Radamel Falcao a doubt for the trip. But the lack of the team’s third choice striker shouldn’t burden Jose Mourinho too much, especially after getting three big stars back in the past week. Thibaut Courtois came back in against Bournemouth, while John Terry and Ramires returned from injury against Porto.
It’s hard to see Mourinho making many changes from the team who saw off Porto. It wouldn’t make much sense to potentially stop the momentum gained from the team’s best display this season. We should see basically the same line up, and they’ll have had a good few days to rest after their midweek exploits.
Leicester weren’t playing in midweek, which could give them a slight edge. Chelsea certainly have to be wary of the Foxes’ form, as they come into the weekend top of the table, having blown away half the league so far. After four wins and a draw from their last five, it’s hard not to be impressed by what former Blues boss Claudio Ranieri has accomplished so far.
Chelsea won in their last trip here back in April. That game was a very different one, with winning the league title the goal back then. Goals from Didier Drogba, John Terry and Ramires secured a 3-1 win for the Blues, which saw them go 49 points ahead of the struggling Foxes. Now, Chelsea sit 17 points behind their opponents, which shows how far Leicester have come, and how far Mourinho’s team have fallen.
Despite that, there is still hope for Chelsea fans here. Leicester haven’t been seeing off the big sides at home, they scrapped a few draws with Tottenham and United, but they lost to Arsenal. There is a chance for Chelsea to get a result here, they just need to play like the Chelsea of last term. While the leaders are dangerous, they’re still very beatable.
Right about now, three points are on Jose Mourinho’s Christmas list, along with goals from star men Diego Costa and Eden Hazard. The festive period would be much easier if either of those two had their confidence restored in front of goal. While both have shown signs of improvement, they won’t be back to their best until we see them scoring again.
Hopefully, those goals will come, and the Blues will get themselves on a winning run. A win at the King Power would send out a huge message, and could see the team back to their best but it might just be a bridge too far.
LCN Verdict: 1-1 draw