Chelsea host Arsenal in the pick of the Premier League fixtures this weekend, with all to play for in terms of the title race as the visitors can’t afford to lose.
Following their setback with the home defeat to Watford on Tuesday night, Arsenal missed their chance to close the gap on Chelsea who were held at Liverpool.
A loss at Stamford Bridge could end all hope for the visitors, and they will certainly have the odds stacked against them with Antonio Conte’s side still looking like the strong favourites to finish top of the pile this season.
Much has changed since they fell to a 3-0 loss at the Emirates last year, and Chelsea still hold the the aces as we pick our combined XI.
Thibaut Courtois, Cesar Azpilicueta and David Luiz get the nod in defence, with Laurent Koscielny joining them to ensure that there is at least some Arsenal representation.
Chelsea have been formidable at the back over the last few months, and a large part of that is down to the individuals mentioned above, as well as Gary Cahill who deserves recognition, but he drops out in favour of Arsenal’s leader at the back who continues to prove to be one of the best defenders in the Premier League.
Hector Bellerin edges out Victor Moses on the right wing as the Spaniard offers more quality for us, while Marcos Alonso beats compatriot Nacho Monreal out on the left.
N’Golo Kante’s influence and impact on this team since his summer arrival can’t be stressed highly enough and so he was an easy pick in the middle, although we’ve gone for Mesut Ozil to join him.
The German international has struggled at times this season, especially in the big games where he has failed to deliver. However, you can’t ignore his quality and he’ll be desperate for one of his more influential games this weekend.
Our attacking trident consists of Diego Costa, Alexis Sanchez and Eden Hazard, as when on top of their game, they are easily amongst the best players in Europe.
All have been in good form this season, and they’ll be required to step up and deliver on Saturday to secure all three points for their respective clubs.
Combined XI: Courtois; Azpilicueta, Luiz, Koscielny; Bellerin, Kante, Ozil, Alonso; Sanchez, Costa, Hazard.