Chelsea (away) Sunday 24th April 2pm Sky Sports

On the plus side

We get a week off, Chelsea have to play Arsenal on Wednesday
They lost at home to Brentford
We beat them in December
Lukaku hasn't started in the last five league games


On the minus side

Chelsea have been playing midweek Champions League matches and still winning at the weekend
We lost at home to Brentford
They've only lost four at home this season, the other three were Liverpool, City and Real Madrid
Lukaku has been subbed on three times in the last five league games

I'd be happy with a draw
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Comments

  • Full rotate we are all in on the Europa League.
  • Play kids or whatever. Just keep the team fresh for Europa imo.
  • We’ve still got a slight chance of qualifying for europe via the league so throwing that away to concentrate on a game the result of which is by no means assured is a mistake in my mind.
    Playing Thursday then Sunday can cause problems but playing Sunday then Thursday should be a lot less so.
  • There’s no way there’s a full rotation, and - imo - there shouldn’t be. Maybe a few of them have a game off, but I don’t think Moyes will do that against Chelsea.

    Fab; Coufal Dawson Diop Cresswell; Soucek Rice; Benrahma Vlasic Lanzini; Yarmolenko

    If my maths is right, this will be Soucek’s 100th appearance.
  • Fabianski
    Fredericks - Dawson - Diop - Cresswell
    Soucek - Rice
    Vlasic - Fornals - Benrahma
    Yarmolenko
  • I would full rotate as much as possible. This close to a possible Europa final. Fredericks / Masuaku / Kral / Noble / Vlasic / Yarmolenko. All of them should come in. I would even chance a youngster or two as well.
  • David Moyes will want a Plan B as he doesn’t want to end the season Eighth and not winning the Europa League.
  • Name a strong team and pray they all come through unscathed
  • The rotation theory has been called for all season by many fans but that is not Moyes way and to dat it is working. Why change now?
  • I don’t think getting smashed by Chelsea is psychologically good preparation for a big match, even if most of the first team isn’t on the pitch.

    Plus I always think resting most of the team puts a lot more pressure on the next game.
  • Fabianski
    Fredricks, Diop, Dawson, Cresswell
    Soucek Noble
    Vlasik Lanzini, Benrhama
    Yarmalenko
  • Apparently ExWhu is saying Diop could be out for the reason of the season with an Achilles injury. Looks like someone is going to have to fill in at Centre Back.
  • edited April 18
    Unless there is good news on Zouma I think it means Johnson standing in for Diop or Rice dropping back into defence. I am aware of the height issue as Diop is our tallest CB but I do think Johnson is a more than adequate defender to slot into that position, I don't think he will let us down and may even be a better option than Diop. As Diop never looks happy on the left a part of me had fancied seeing how Johnson would get on.
  • edited April 18
    Coufal - Johnson - Dawson - Cresswell - Fornals
  • Sounded like Zouma was also out for the rest of the season.

    So just down to Dawson
  • Someone is ahead of us all.

    This is from wikipedia
    Ajibola Joshua Odunayo Afolarin Alese (born 17 January 2001) is an English professional footballer who plays for West Ham United, as a central defender Alese stepped in at a crucial time for West Ham during a CB crisis and scored the winning goal in the 2022 Europa League final.

    I don't know what his character is like and it could backfire and knock his confidence but we could play him against Chelsea at the weekend, if he can hold his own against them he can do so against Frankfurt.
  • I think we matched Chelsea by using wingbacks last time. If Diop is out, replace him with Johnson and bring in Coufal as wingback.
  • edited April 19
    I thought oggy wasn't far away from recovery
  • Daws will cover both CB roles. There, sorted.
  • Lukerz said:

    Coufal - Johnson - Dawson - Cresswell - Fornals

    I don't like this. Playing three players out of position to cover a single absence?

    Kral has played a lot at centre back earlier in his career. Rice we know can play there. Alese is next in line from the U23s. Rice represents the least risk but can we afford to lose him from midfield?

    Personally, I'd go with Alese. Left-sided CB who will have trained plenty of times with the first team.
  • I'd also go with Alese. As long as the coaching staff think he's ready of course.
  • Moyes will not hand Alese a game in such a crucial match.
  • edited April 19
    I just don't see this game as crucial. That's just my opinion though. Giving the next in line some game time so he is ready to start or come off the bench in Europa is much more crucial for me.
    I do appreciate that it could all go belly up of course.
  • edited April 19
    Yeah this does become an experiment game now. He is probably going to go with a back four he wants to play in the Europa League but needs to know which option.

    Personally, I would go with a back 3 & Fornals as LWB & Coufal as RWB, with Johnson as RCB. He’s done that before & Cresswell has played LCB loads under Moyes.

    Alese would provide a like-for-like but I think Moyes will play Rice at CB ahead of that.
  • edited April 19
    All games are crucial now, IMO. In the EL, obviously, but even a point at Chelsea could be the difference in getting European football next season or not.

    But that's not to say that Alese shouldn't play. I mean, is that not the point of the reserve team? Cresswell is so suspect defensively I wouldn't trust him any more than I would Alese. I think Johnson could do a job at CB, but he's been playing fullback all season, whereas Alese has been playing LCB so should be more at home there.

    Big match experience will obviously come into it, but I honestly think it should either be:

    Coufal Dawson Alese Cresswell (if playing a four)

    or

    Coufal Johnson Dawson Alese Cresswell (if playing a five)
  • Yeah ok the game does mean something against Chelsea and I obviously want us to win. I just think if we've got a next in line then this is a good time to try him when there is a very important game coming up and he might need some game time. I mean what happens if Dawson gets injured.
  • Hamstew said:

    I mean what happens if Dawson gets injured.

    Stuart Pearce dusts off the Mundials
  • ( Shuffling in the loft) Right, where's my boots?
  • Given we could need a CB from somewhere for most of the rest of the season, I think it makes sense to try Alese, although I wouldn't be surprised for Moyes to stick Kral there instead.
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