Chelsea vs AS Roma preview

October 17, 2017
By: Nemanja Lazarevic

Premier League holders Chelsea impressed to win their first two Champions League fixtures, but it is no given they will continue the good run against AS Roma.

The Giallorossi picked up four points from their two games, and they need to continue in the same manner as Atletico Madrid could soon be breathing down their necks.

One would think that Chelsea would start the new season in great spirits after lifting the Premier League trophy, but that has not been the case following the turmoil that resulted from Antonio Conte’s unhappiness with the summer transfer dealings.

Following the opening loss to Burnley, the Blues enjoyed a couple of successful months in all competitions, but now find themselves in real problems.

With star striker Alvaro Morata picking up a hamstring injury, Chelsea suffered back to back Premier League defeats to Man City and sorry Crystal Palace, which served as major blows to the players’ confidence.

The Blues will now attempt to return to the right track and record their third successive Champions League win, and they are priced at 1.62 (8/13) to succeed in that quest.

According to reports, Alvaro Morata could soon resume training, but he is unlikely to be risked against AS Roma, meaning that Eden Hazard could start as a false nine.

Davide Zappacosta is expected to start on the right flank now that Victor Moses is injured, while N’Golo Kante and Danny Drinkwater remain in the treatment room.

Probable starting line-up (3-4-3): Courtois – Azpilicueta, Luiz, Cahill – Zappacosta, Bakayoko, Fabregas, Alonso – Pedro, Hazard, Willian.

Having reached new heights under Luciano Spalletti, AS Roma hope to continue the rise with Eusebio Di Francesco at the helm.

Taking into account the summer changes, the Giallorossi had a decent start to the season, but home defeats to Inter Milan and Napoli seriously damaged their top 3 hopes.

On the other hand, AS Roma played out a goalless draw with Atletico Madrid before defeating Qarabag on the road in the Champions League, and they will want to take at least one point from the Chelsea game.

The victory over Qarabag ended a ten-match winless run on UCL travels, while the Giallorossi also lost five of last six Champions League fixtures on English soil.

Daniele De Rossi could be rested after a difficult game against Napoli, with Kevin Strootman and Maxime Gonalons pushing for starts.

Former Spurs defender Federico Fazio should come in for Chelsea target Kostas Manolas, who is out with an adductor problem.

Probable starting line-up (4-2-3-1): Alisson – Bruno Peres, Fazio, Juan Jesus, Kolarov – Gonalons, Strootman – Florenzi, Nainggolan, Perotti – Dzeko.

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