Chelsea's squad is likely to look quite different even from the one that travelled to Bournemouth last week. With a spate of injuries to contend with Mauricio Pochettino has been left somewhat depleted for options.
Even for a side that has had such vast amounts of money spent on it, missing at least four starting players has resulted in Pochettino chasing his own tail to cover. It has also had a big impact on the depth available to the Argentine head coach.
Against the Cherries he was only able to name three substitutes that had previously played for the club's senior side — one of those was Cole Palmer with just 29 minutes to his name at that point — with only one of those, Ben Chilwell, having started a league game in blue. Although several players are set to return to the squad, none more so than Noni Madueke and potentially Moises Caicedo, the issues run deeper.
Marc Cucurella is also likely to be involved but hasn't played a minute in the league up to this point and would be the third left-back — fourth if Levi Colwill is counted — in the squad. Armando Broja is also close to a return having not played since November 2022. He is working his way back from a damaging knee injury.
It had been expected that the Albanian would get some gametime with club's academy sides before a senior step up is made but Pochettino hinted at his inclusion for the visit of Villa. «Maybe we need one day more, maybe Armando Broja can be involved, maybe Sunday,» he said ahead of the game.
«Not sure, we need to assess him tomorrow. We need to recover players and it is important many players start be available to be involved again.»
Mauricio Pochettino shown new Enzo Fernandez and Mykhailo Mudryk Chelsea role in Aston Villa plan
Chelsea news andRead on football.london