|Romelu Lukaku is primed to fire Chelsea past Brighton on Wednesday night against Brighton. (Photo credit: Sky Sports)|
Chelsea vs BrightonStamford Bridge Stadium8:30pm
Chelsea know this is their chance to leapfrog Liverpool after the Kops lost at the King Power Stadium to Leicester City on Tuesday night.
The Blues have had a torrid time of late but managed to grind out precious result against Aston Villa on Boxing Day, a win over Brighton at the Stamford Bridge Stadium on Wednesday night will help Chelsea above the Kops by three points although Jurgen Klopp’s side will have a game in hand.
Thomas Tuchel has expressed his dissatisfaction over Chelsea’s recent form, partly due to unavailability of players on covid grounds and some unavoidable midseason injury crisis but with Romelu Lukaku back to his imperious best, he can rest assured on goal scoring front.
Brighton returned to winning ways for the first time in slightly over three months with the victory over Brentford on Boxing day, it was their first win since early September and it came at the right time, should they manage to avoid defeat against Chelsea, they’d move into the top half of the table.
Brighton have their own problems but they also find ways to contribute to their own downfall most times; they underperform their xG, waste chances and concede late goals to lose games they dominate, they’re not relegation threatened but can they begin to live up to their true potential?
Chelsea will finally be able to start Lukaku upfront after he sent the right signals to the manager with a goal and assist against Aston Villa, the manager felt he’s not ready but he was quite vocal at the post match presser about his readiness to lead the line again.
It's quite interesting to note that Chelsea and Brighton have played out draws in three of their last five with Chelsea winning the other two, a draw would be a very big result for the Seagulls but Chelsea can’t afford to lose grounds to rivals in the title race.
Manchester City are peeling away in the title race, they currently sit six clear and can extend that by the time they face Brentford on Wednesday night, only a win would suffice for the hosts against Brighton but they have to work for it.
Reece James conceded an unfortunate own goal against Villa, he has been underwhelming for the Blues of late and with Cesar Azpilicueta’s contract running out in the summer, Chelsea might need a strong back up for the England right back.
Ben Chilwell will miss the rest of the season after undergoing surgery on his achilles heels, Marcus Alonso is the standard replacement and again, Chelsea will need a back up to the Spaniard.