Mykhailo Mudryk is benched and Malo Gusto begins for Chelsea against Nottingham Forest.

As the season draws to a close, our Chelsea panel examines the lineup that Mauricio Pochettino should start against Nottingham Forest in the Premier League on Saturday.

On Saturday night, Chelsea will be trying to build on their recent back-to-back victories over West Ham United and Tottenham.


This weekend’s matchup between the Blues and Nottingham Forest is their third-to-last Premier League match of the year. Chelsea is currently in seventh place and is well-positioned to make a comeback to European football after missing this season.


After a recent 2-0 victory over Spurs, the Hammers were destroyed 5-0 in just three days. After both, Mauricio Pochettino was obviously thrilled and feels that his team is finally beginning to exhibit the qualities that he and his coaching staff have been attempting to extract from them during the entire season.

On the road, though, it has been an entirely different tale. Their sole Premier League triumph this year has come at Crystal Palace, about three months ago, which is still their most recent away success from home.

After recent performances, Pochettino might be tempted to stick with a mostly unchanged lineup for the trip to the City Ground. However, as Bobby Vincent, Jake Stokes, and Joe Doyle discuss below, he could make some changes to his team.


Bobby Vincent

If I were Pochettino, I wouldn’t make any significant changes following their two convincing wins. But maybe there could be one or two changes made.

For me, Malo Gusto should return at right back. After sustaining a small injury, the Frenchman entered the game late in the victory over West Ham in order to replace Benoit Badiashile in the lineup and allow Trevoh Chalobah to return to the center of defense.


Marc Cucurella will once again start at left defense, and ideally he can maintain his excellent play in his new position as he moves into the midfield to partner with Moises Caicedo. Due to his recent outstanding performance, Caicedo, an Ecuadorian, will once again partner with Conor Gallagher while Enzo Fernandez is still out.

Next, Cole Palmer is in the middle, and Noni Madueke is on the right. If Raheem Sterling is well enough, I might consider starting him again. I believe that Sterling is a better fit for this type of game than Mykhailo Mudryk is. Naturally, Nicolas Jackson is at the top.


Bobby’s starting eleven is Madueke, Palmer, Sterling, Cucurella, Gusto, Silva, Caicedo, and Cucurella.


Joe Doyle

The goal selection is rather straightforward: Petrovic goes first. There are two choices to be made in defense, one on the right and one in the center. Gusto would start at right back, Cucurella at left back, and Chalobah and Silva in the center.


With Caicedo and Gallagher starting, it’s quite straightforward again in center midfield. First up, this is Jackson, which just leaves a slight dilemma across attacking midfield.

Palmer’s beginning is almost a certain; the only uncertainty is in where. He’s in the middle for me, which means Madueke can hopefully keep making an impression on the right wing. Furthermore, I would give Mudryk one more chance to try and make an impression on the left side. He will be up against a back three system with wing-backs, so the pressure will be on him to score whenever he gets the ball, something the Blues need him to demonstrate he can do consistently.


Joe’s starting eleven are Madueke, Palmer, Mudryk; Jackson; Gusto, Chalobah, Silva, Cucurella; Caicedo, Gallagher; and Petrovic.

Stokes Jake

Luckily for Pochettino, selecting the starting XI for this weekend should be rather simple. When Petrovic took Sanchez’s place in goal, he has barely made a mistake. Chalobah and Silva, meanwhile, have given Chelsea much-needed steadiness at the back.

The Chelsea manager doesn’t have many choices in the middle of the park, but Gallagher and Caicedo both have strong recent runs and should be starting members of the team. Mudryk, Jackson, and Madueke all need to finish the season with a strong run of games despite a few lackluster outings.


While some familiar names like Christopher Nkunku and Levi Colwill making a comeback to the starting lineup would be nice, the Blues’ momentum could be hampered by making too many changes. And Pochettino doesn’t need that while facing a team struggling to survive in the Premier League.


Jake’s starting eleven are as follows: Petrovic; Madueke, Palmer, Mudryk; Jackson; Chalobah, Badiashile, Silva, Cucurella; Caicedo, Gallagher.


Cucurella has emerged as a crucial member of the Blues in recent weeks, despite a few unimpressive games at the beginning of the campaign. A small change to Chelsea’s formation that sees the Spaniard play as an inverted left-back has rejuvenated him.


In the West Londoners’ victory over West Ham, Gusto made his comeback, and Reece James has just started practicing with the main team again. Although it might be too soon for either to start against Nottingham Forest, it would be nice to see them both come off the bench.

Written by schooleiwa

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