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Predicted Chelsea XI v Sunderland: Hazard out & Oscar dropped but caretakers stay true to Mourinho

Chelsea begin life after Jose Mourinho with a Premier League visit from Sunderland on Saturday.

The Special One was sacked on Thursday with the Blues only one point above the relegation zone.

SEE MORE: Chelsea sack Mourinho: Full statement as Jose axed 7 months after delivering title

BBC Sport expects Guus Hiddink to replace him until at least the end of the season, but Mourinho’s assistants Steve Holland and Eddie Newton will be in the dugout for the bottom-of-the-table clash.

Here, CaughtOffside predicts what lineup the caretakers will go with at Stamford Bridge…

SEE MORE:
Chelsea vs Sunderland Premier League preview: Blues undergo first game without Mourinho
Jose Mourinho sacked by Chelsea: Opportunistic Man United fans want Special One at Old Trafford
Chelsea sack Jose Mourinho: Five leading contenders to replace Special One at Stamford Bridge

GK: Thibaut Courtois

Has yet to be on the winning side in the Premier League since coming back into the team at the expense of Asmir Begovic after recovering from injury.

RB: Branislav Ivanovic

Chelsea’s next manager might take a look at Ivanovic’s position in the side, but Holland and Newton will stay loyal to a Mourinho favourite on Saturday.

CB: John Terry

Substituted during Monday’s defeat to Leicester City, but it would take a brave man to leave out the skipper when Mourinho’s influence is already missing.

John Terry

CB: Kurt Zouma

Newton and Holland might be tempted to restore Gary Cahill alongside Terry, but lack of pace at the back remains a concern and so Zouma will get the nod.

LB: Cesar Azpilicueta

Was given a very tough time by Riyad Mahrez at the King Power Stadium. Could have another tricky afternoon if the lively Duncan Watmore starts for Sunderland.

CM: Nemanja Matic

Getting the Serbian destroyer back to his best will be one of the priorities for the incoming boss. Matic must protect his back four in the way that he did last season.

CM: Ramires

Has been preferred to Fabregas in the middle of the park of late because of his defensive awareness, and Holland and Newton are unlikely to go against Mourinho’s judgement.

AMR: Willian

One player who can look himself in the mirror and honestly say that Mourinho’s sacking is no fault of his. Will be a reliable performer for whoever steps into Jose’s shoes.

AMC: Cesc Fabregas

There could still be a recall for Fabregas in a more advanced role in place of Oscar, whose disappointing season has seen him contribute just three goals and one assist in 17 games.

Cesc Fabregas Chelsea

AML: Pedro

Eden Hazard is unlikely to feature after limping off with a mysterious hip problem against Leicester, as The Guardian reports. The World Cup winner could replace him on the left wing.

ST: Diego Costa

Loic Remy scored off the bench against the Foxes and deserves a run in the team but will not get one. Needs to focus on scoring goals again rather than scrapping with defenders.

Chelsea lineup v Sunderland

SEE ALSO:
Video evidence Sky Sports are grooming Chelsea captain John Terry as Gary Neville replacement
Chelsea star Eden Hazard accused of faking injury because he doesn’t want to play for Jose Mourinho
Chelsea transfer news: Emmanuel Adebayor holds talks with Blues about Premier League return

More Stories asmir begovic Branislav Ivanovic Cesar Azpilicueta cesc fabregas Diego Costa Eddie Newton Eden Hazard Gary Cahill guus hiddink john terry jose mourinho Kurt Zouma loic remy Nemanja Matic Oscar Pedro Ramires Steve Holland Thibaut Courtois Willian