How Chelsea could line up against Villarreal

    Chelsea‘s international finalists from Euro 2020 and the Copa America have all been included in a strong 26-man provisional squad for Wednesday’s UEFA Super Cup battle with Villarreal.

    The likes of Thiago SilvaCesar AzpilicuetaMason Mount and Jorginho did not take part in any pre-season matches, though, so Thomas Tuchel may be reluctant to field some of his star men right from the first whistle.

    Trevoh ChalobahRuben Loftus-CheekRoss BarkleyDavide Zappacosta and Tiemoue Bakayoko have all had parts to play in pre-season, but the quintet are not set to travel to Windsor Park for the encounter.

    Callum Hudson-Odoi – who features on the ‘B list’ – may earn a place on the right flank if Reece James is not deemed ready to start, while Marcos Alonso could find himself bombing down the left-hand side.

    N’Golo Kante and Mateo Kovacic ought to form the Blues’ midfield pairing in Belfast, while Mount’s lack of preparations could see Hakim Ziyech and Timo Werner both given the nods in the final third.

    Champions League final hero Kai Havertz seems set to lead the attack, but if Chelsea manage to get a £97.5m deal for Romelu Lukaku over the line by 11pm on Tuesday, he can be registered for the Super Cup.

    Chelsea possible starting lineup: Mendy; Azpilicueta, Zouma, Rudiger; Hudson-Odoi, Kovacic, Kante, Alonso; Ziyech, Werner; Havertz


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