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Michael Tucker

NK Maribor 1 Chelsea 1

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Faramir   

Does Costa need minutes or a rest?

I'm inclined to say rest but could see arguments for both.

We should rotate heavily for this one. Ake is more than capable of starting, as is Mikel. Schurrle and Salah had nightmares last week but maybe some more time will be good for them.

I would think minutes for Costa. He needs to regain match fitness, but of course, this needs to be balanced with any reaction his hamstrings had after the game on Saturday.

I would approach this game seriously. We want to make sure we get all three points. Before the 6-0 they received from us they had been undefeated in CL qualifiers and got two draws off of Schalke and Sporting.

Mikel was injured over the Weekend, not sure for how long? I would definitely play Ramires. He needs minutes just like Costa.

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Scooba   

Revised team predictions:

Cech

Azpi Cahill Zouma Luis

Ramires Ake Matic

Willian Costa Hazard

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This really should be a strawberry team, and any non-regular who doesn't get picked (Ake, say) should take it as a sign that they are not proper members of the real squad.

Cech

Azpi Luis

Zouma One of the usual 3

Ramires Ake

Salah Baker Solanke

Drogba

Schwarzer genuinely is not a member of the CL squad.

Mikel and Remy I presume unfit.

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Scooba   

We won't start with all those squad players^^^ but they will be on the bench. JM prefers to start reasonably strong and bring on the youngsters hopefully all going well after 60 mins.

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I hope Baker gets some minutes, but there's no way he will start. Is there a reason for no Schurrle in your line up Droy?

Salah, Wilian (for an hour) Schurrle for me. We do need to meek sure of the win.

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I don't see any reason to rest Courtois but I hope that, finally, the other Belgian isn't required at all for this match - not even a token 10 seconds. Rests for Oscar, Ivanovic and one CB would also help.

I can't see Baker, Christensen or Solanke (or Brown) being involved from the start and they're unlikely to be on the bench now that we have more senior players fit. Aké and Ramires in midfield would be excellent, probably our most mobile combination.

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paulw66   

This really should be a strawberry team, and any non-regular who doesn't get picked (Ake, say) should take it as a sign that they are not proper members of the real squad.

Well there is no way Solanke is a "proper" first team squad member.

I dont agree with the bolded bit at all. We need to make sure we go out and win the game first and foremost, then we can relax in the last 2 games, especially if Schalke and Lisbon draw.

We can't turn up with 3 or 4 kids in the line up. Dont forget they drew their first two games.

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Sciatika   

I'd start with our strongest lineup:

--------------Courtois

Bran----Cahill---Terry----Azpi

-------Fabregas---Matic

---Willian-----Oscar----Hazard

-------------Costa

If they get a decent lead, they can have a rest and play some youngsters. I want us not to have too much to do in the CL up to the New Year. That way, we can focus on making our lead in the PL as big as possible - 12pts would be good. Thrashing Spurs a couple of times in the process would be nice too.

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