Friday, 12 September 2008

Chelsea team news

Mark Hughes press conference on Thursday: Martin Petrov is out, Johnson is a real doubt, Richards is more likely to play than Johnson but by no means definite.

Ian Ladyman writes today that Robinho "seems likely to start his City career on the substitutes’ bench." I don't know what this is based on; Hughes has said that Robinho will be involved but no more.

The only option seems to play Jô on his own up front, with Wright-Phillips on the right. With Petrov injured, Robinho should start on the left. If he is not ready, Ireland should keep his place from the Sunderland game. Elano played on the wing a few times last season and his record at CoMS could get him a start.

In central midfield Vincent Kompany is the only definite starter. If his legs are up to it, Didi Hamann should make his second consecutive start. Providing that Johnson doesn't make it, either Ireland or Elano will complete the midfield trio (unless we go really defensive and drop Gelson in there as well).

UPDATE 12.04 The Mail reports that Robinho showed up to training this morning, having arrived from Brazil last night. They have a photo of him at the training ground. This is important.

Chris Bailey's MEN preview claims that Robinho will start, but Elano and Jô will be on the bench. How does he know this? It sounds unlikely to me: surely Robinho is the least likely to start, everything else being equal. If this is true though, we could play Sturridge up front with Robinho and Wright-Phillips either side. There would be stepovers.

More serious preview up later.

No comments: