Predicted Chelsea XI vs Preston: Gilchrist starts in 4-4-2 formation

Mauricio Pochettino's boys host Preston North End in the third round of the FA Cup. Chelsea's position on the Premier League table doesn't look promising at all and this competition could be looked at as a realistic route to securing a spot in the Europa League.

Chelsea FC v Crystal Palace - Premier League
Chelsea FC v Crystal Palace - Premier League / Visionhaus/GettyImages

1. Goalkeeper: Djordje Petrovic (Serbia)

Some of the supporters would expect the likes of Bettinelli or Bergstrom to be given a chance. But Pochettino would opt for Petrovic as he takes Cup competitions very seriously knowing that it could help Chelsea secure a spot in European competitions.

2. Right Back: Malo Gusto (France)

Gusto has shown real promise in recent times and will be expected to continue in his role.

3. Centre Back: Axel Disasi (France)

His fellow Frenchman Benoit Badiashile will not be available until next week which means that Disasi's spot will remain uncontested.

4. Centre Back: Alfie Gilchrist (England)

The Veteran has been heavily involved so far and his effort in the last match proved that he warrants the given game time. However with a Semi Final scheduled in midweek, the Gaffer would like to rest Silva and give the 20 year old his full debut.

5. Left Back: Levi Colwill (England)

Levi Colwill has got to work on his contribution in the wider areas of the pitch. If the struggles continue, Pochettino might considering using him differently. Ben Chilwell on the other hand has returned to team training but is not ready to make the matchday squad yet.

Christopher Nkunku
Chelsea FC v Crystal Palace - Premier League / Visionhaus/GettyImages

6. Central Midfield: Conor Gallagher (England)

Moises Caicedo could be rested in this game as the Anchor man will be needed for the midweek fixture and Conor Gallagher can continue in a relatively deeper role. Returning loanee Andrey Santos could be looked at as an interesting option in the near future with Romeo Lavia and Lesly Ugochukwu unavailable.

7. Central Midfield: Enzo Fernandez (Argentina)

Fernandez was out with a minor injury and came on as a substitute in the last game. He should be starting tomorrow in order to gain match sharpness for the upcoming fixtures.

8. Right Wing: Noni Madueke (England)

Since his reintroduction to the side, Madueke has undoubetdly been one of the most promising players. The fans believe that he could pose a threat to Raheem Sterling's game time very soon if he's given an extended run this month.

9. Left Wing: Mykhailo Mudryk (Ukraine)

Mudryk should be making his comeback to the starting XI too. This game will be crucial for him as Nkunku's return and Madueke's resurgence will limit his opportunities later.

10. Second Striker: Raheem Sterling (England)

Christopher Nkunku had some issues earlier this week and that will keep him off the starting XI. And Cole Palmer has been Chelsea's best player by far so Pochettino would want to avoid risking him. However Broja gets easily isolated up front so the Gaffer will consider adding support centrally and Sterling should be the leading candidate.

11. Striker: Armando Broja (Albania)

As confirmed in the pre match press conference, Armando Broja will start tomorrow. Nicolas Jackson leaving for International duty will give the Albanian International enough time to prove his worth.

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What changes would you make to this lineup?