Chelsea host Wolverhampton Wanderers in the Premier League on Saturday with their place in next season’s Champions League still not secured.
Thomas Tuchel’s side have looked nailed on favourites to finish third for almost the entire season, but recent defeats to Arsenal and Everton have seen them slip back towards the chasing pack.
In fact, Chelsea are now just three points ahead of Arsenal in fourth having played the same number of matches. So, with four games left of the season the Blues are far from guaranteed a spot in Europe’s elite club competition.
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Tottenham are five points behind Chelsea so the odds are still in Tuchel’s favour, but a win over Wolves is crucial.
Despite a very promising start to the season, Bruno Lage’s team have lost seven of their past 10 games and have seen their own European charge falter and fade away. They looked as though they could challenge for the top four at the start of 2022, but that’s now a distant memory.
Chelsea have dropped points to Manchester United and the aforementioned Arsenal and Everton recently, all of whom were in poor form like Wolves. So, Tuchel will need a reaction from his players to ensure the same thing doesn’t happen again.
Tuchel has confirmed that Kante and Jorginho are both out of the game, meaning Mateo Kovacic and Ruben Loftus-Cheek will be handed starts. Kovacic and Jorginho could only manage 45 minutes each against Everton last time out while Loftus-Cheek put in an impressive display at Goodison Park.
As for the rest of the team, Cesar Azpilicueta might be dropped following his mistake that cost the Blues against Everton, which came shortly after he conceded a penalty against Arsenal. Trevoh Chalobah could take his place.
Christian Pulisic could also be handed a start to give Timo Werner a rest after a busy run in the side. Mason Mount has also played a lot of football recently, but it’s almost at the stage where he can’t be dropped due to his importance to Chelsea.
Romelu Lukaku wasn’t even brought off the bench when Chelsea needed a goal against Everton so he’s unlikely to start.
Chelsea’s Potential Starting XI vs Wolves