Friday, February 24, 2012

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25.02. (Sat) 16:00 Chelsea FC - Bolton



Ivanovic, Cahill, Luiz, Cole Lampard, Ramires, Essien Sturridge, Torres, Mata

JaaskelainenSteinsson, Ream, Wheater, Robinson
Eagles, Reo-Coker, Muamba, Miyaichi
Klasnic, N'Gog

After Andre Villas-Boas’ decision to drop senior players for the trip to Napoli backfired spectacularly, it would be fair to assume that Chelsea will field their strongest possible side when Bolton visit on Saturday.

The Portuguese manager doesn’t have too many injuries to contend with ahead of the match, with Jose Bosingwa (hamstring) and John Terry (knee) the only players definitely ruled out.

Juan Mata (broken finger) is doubtful following a collision with Napoli defender Salvatore Aronica, but may be able to play through the pain, while Fernando Torres has been suffering with an illness, although he should be available to start.

Bolton, on the other hand, have a long list of injuries. Kevin Davies (knee), Marcos Alonso (ankle) Tyrone Mears (knee), Ricardo Gardner (hip), Chung-Yong Lee (broken leg), Stuart Holden and Sean Davis (both knee) are all ruled out, while Owen Coyle has others to worry about too.

Young defender Joe Riley (ankle) has been labelled very doubtful for the trip, while Mark Davies (hamstring) is very much touch-and-go. One good piece of news for Coyle, however, is the potential return of Marvin Sordell (eye), who will probably take a place on the bench.

  • Chelsea not won any of their last five matches in all competitions.
  • When the two sides met earlier in the season, Chelsea ran out 5-1 winners at the Reebok Stadium with Frank Lampard scoring a hat-trick and Daniel Sturridge netting twice.
  • Bolton have lost their last two Premier League matches.
  • Owen Coyle’s team have lost nine of their last 15 away matches in all competitions.
  • Chelsea have beaten Bolton by four goals in five of their last seven meetings.
  • Bolton’s last win against Chelsea came at Stamford Bridge back in December 2003.
  • Gary Cahill (pictured right) is set to make his first appearance against Bolton since leaving for Chelsea in January.
  • Each of the last eight meetings between the two sides have ended in a win for the Blues.
Although Chelsea have been pretty dreadful recently, it is difficult to look past them, regardless of their form. Bolton’s away performances this term have been awful, and with the amount of injuries they have, it would be disastrous for Chelsea if the Trotters stole a result.
Maybe it will take a home defeat to Bolton to really understand how much of a mess Chelsea are in at the moment, but you get the impression that anything less than a win could have serious consequences for Villas-Boas.
Editor's Prediction
Chelsea 2-1 Bolton