Chelsea FC Host Newcastle: Confirmed Line-ups And Analysis

MILTON KEYNES, ENGLAND - JANUARY 31: Eden Hazard of Chelsea celebrates scoring his penalty during the Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round match between Milton Keynes Dons and Chelsea at Stadium mk on January 31, 2016 in Milton Keynes, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
MILTON KEYNES, ENGLAND - JANUARY 31: Eden Hazard of Chelsea celebrates scoring his penalty during the Emirates FA Cup Fourth Round match between Milton Keynes Dons and Chelsea at Stadium mk on January 31, 2016 in Milton Keynes, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images) /
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Chelsea FC welcome Newcastle United to Stamford Bridge this afternoon for another interesting Premier League clash. The teams are in!

Guus Hiddink and Steve McClaren will square off on the touchline this afternoon as Chelsea and Newcastle United do battle on the pitch. Both bosses have confirmed their respective teams.

Chelsea FCNewcastle United
Thibaut CourtoisRob Elliot
Branislav IvanovicDaryl Janmaat
Gary CahillSteven Taylor
John Terry (C)Fabricio Coloccini (C)
Cesar AzpilicuetaRolando Aarons
Nemanja MaticCheick Tiote
Cesc FabregasJonjo Shelvey
PedroMossa Sissoko
WillianGeorgino Wijnaldum
Eden HazardAndros Townsend
Diego CostaAleksandr Mitrovic
SubstitutesSubstitutes
Asmir BegovicKarl Darlow
Baba RahmanJamaal Lascelles
John Obi MikelJack Colback
Ruben Loftus-CheekHenri Saivet
Bertrand TraoreAyoze Perez
KenedyEmmanuel Riviere
Loic RemySeydou Doumbia

More chelsea fc: Kurt Zouma’s Injury And Why Young Players Matter To Fans

Eden Hazard makes his long-awaited return to the starting line-up this afternoon. Due to a combination of injury issues and managerial decisions, this will be the Belgian’s first Premier League start since 2nd January. This is one of three changes that Hiddink makes to the team that managed to secure a late point against Manchester United last weekend.

In deeper midfield, John Obi Mikel is dropped after enjoying an extended run in the side. Evidently a favourite of the interim boss, the Nigerian has been receiving a healthy amount of playing time over the last month or so. However, his performances haven’t been too impressive and with the Blues desperately needing a win, the more defensive-minded Mikel has been left out.

As a result, Cesc Fabregas will likely drop in alongside Nemanja Matic. The Spaniard’s best work is done from this position due to the extra time and space that he is afforded by the opposition. Having said that, Newcastle are equally in need of three points so expect them to press high.

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Oscar is another man who makes way, with Pedro coming in to replace him. The Brazilian scored a decent hat-trick against MK Dons in the FA Cup but he has since failed to put on a show in a more competitive environment. He has paid the price this afternoon as the much-maligned summer signing in Pedro takes up a spot.

It will be interesting to see how the attacking midfielders line-up. Hazard has played in the number 10 role before, but so have the others. Pedro is the person who will most probably be charged with it to start off, but Hiddink would have likely encouraged them to roam and interchange. Should they do this effectively, the Toon defence will be overrun.

Kurt Zouma is the third player to drop out, albeit under forced conditions. His ACL injury has ruled him out for the rest of the season and Gary Cahill will step in to partner John Terry for the foreseeable future.

Diego Costa has been passed as fit to play, after he broke his nose in training midweek. He will become yet another Blues player to don the mask this season.

On the Newcastle side of affairs, Steve McClaren names an unchanged side following their impressive 1-0 defeat of West Brom last weekend. Their performance was touted as their best of the campaign thus far and it was a impressive bounce-back after receiving a 3-0 drubbing from Everton the game previous.

With Aleksandr Mitrovic hitting the back of the net last time out, expect him to cause some problems for the Blues defence as he rides high on confidence.

Next: Reports: Chelsea FC Lining Up Atletico Star As John Terry Replacement

What do you think of the teams? Let us know your thoughts and predictions in the comments below!