Just three days before the FA Cup final, Chelsea take on Newcastle United at Stamford Bridge as the two sides battle for the final Champions League berth.
The Blues may rue their luck for having two crucial games so close to each other, but everybody at the club is certainly delighted that the team are still in the race for Champions League places as well as battling for two major trophies.
Chelsea were always going to have an easy job in their home game against QPR after masterminding a Champions League victory over Barcelona, but the 6-1 triumph showed just how well Roberto Di Matteo’s side are playing at the moment.
They are unbeaten in last 11 games and have won 7 of those, and their impressive form is the main reason why the Blues are just 1.55 (11/20) with Ladbrokes to win this game.
Roberto Di Matteo is expected to make several changes to the starting line-up and he will have Branislav Ivanovic back from a three-match ban.
Ramires, Didier Drogba and Raul Meireles should return to the side, but David Luiz and Gary Cahill remain sidelined through injury.
Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Cech – Bosingwa, Ivanovic, Terry, Bertrand – Lampard, Mikel, Meireles – Ramires, Drogba, Kalou.
Newcastle suffered a major blow to their top 4 hopes as they were beaten 4-0 by in-form Wigan, and the Magpies are now looking to make amends for such a disappointing defeat.
In spite of the heavy defeat, Alan Pardew’s side sit tied on points with fourth-placed Tottenham and one point clear of Chelsea, meaning they would stay in contention for a top 4 finish with a good result from Stamford Bridge.
While the Magpies clearly face an uphill task against high-flying Chelsea, they will try to take advantage of the opponent’s busy schedule and take at least one point from London, although the most important thing is to forget all about the Wigan defeat and solely focus on this clash.
With a pretty small squad to choose from, Alan Pardew is unlikely to make major changes to the side that faced Wigan at DW Stadium.
Probable starting line-up (4-3-3): Krul – Simpson, Coloccini, Williamson, Santon – Gutierrez, Tiote, Cabaye – Ben Arfa, Cisse, Ba.