How Graham Potter’s first Chelsea lineup is expected to look against RB Salzburg


Graham Potter is set to take charge of his first Chelsea game when Red Bull Salzburg travel to Stamford Bridge for a Champions League clash on Wednesday evening. The new Blues boss was set to take charge of Chelsea for the first time at Fulham this weekend, but all Premier League games were postponed following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday.

Chelsea will be looking to get their first three points of the Champions League group stage after losing to Dinamo Zagreb on Tuesday, which proved to be Thomas Tuchel’s last game as Blues head coach.

There will be plenty of intrigue as to who Potter selects in his first Chelsea XI to face the Austrian side on Wednesday. Will Potter go with what he believes is his strongest XI, or will he have Sunday’s huge clash against Liverpool in mind?

Potter’s first major selection decision comes between the sticks. Kepa Arrizabalaga started against Zagreb, with Tuchel saying it was important for Mendy to ‘take a breath’ and that he had problems with his patella tendon, only making him fit enough for the bench.

The 47-year-old favours a three-at-the-back system, which is likely to consist of Wesley Fofana, Thiago Silva and Kalidou Kouliably. Potter will also be able to select former Brighton man Marc Cucurella again, with Reece James on the other flank.

Jorginho and Mateo Kovacic could make up Potter’s first Chelsea midfield, while he has plenty of options in the three attacking positions. Kai Havertz and Christian Pulisic will be hoping for starts, but Mason Mount, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Raheem Sterling may be preferred.

Potter’s possible first Chelsea XI: Mendy; Fofana, Silva, Koulibaly; James, Jorginho, Kovacic, Cucurella; Mount, Aubameyang, Sterling.


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