Let’s get one thing out of the way early.
Chelsea aren’t going to score six again tomorrow. It can’t happen.
Ahead of the Blues’ second home game of the season, the talk of the town has been just how many Carlo Ancelotti’s boys are going to pot against Stoke City.
Not helped by the seven they notched against Tony Pulis’ side last April, and the Potters’ poor start to the season, expectations are getting out of hand, and people are getting somewhat ahead of themselves.
A poll on the Official Chelsea Website reveals that almost 52% of supporters would be disappointed if the match finished 1-0 to the home team.
The fact the club would suggest such a poll speaks almost as loudly as the results.
Pulis has had some rather stern words for Stamford Bridge brass this week, perhaps attempting to deflect attention away from the fixture, by lambasting the club’s interest in backup goalkeeper Asmir Begovic.
The problem with his annoyance, however, is that it’s his club who shed light on the situation. Chelsea have sat quietly and not commented on the issue, whilst Begovic has been thrust into attention by his own employers, who, of course, do not want to sell a second-choice stopper for a short-term profit.
No, not at all.
It was a quieter Friday than usual for Ancelotti, who handed press conference duties over to new Brazilian signing Ramires.
The club’s new number seven is fit and ready to make his debut tomorrow, with confirmation that he is included in the Italian’s matchday squad.
Missing are defensive pair Branislav Ivanovic and Jeffrey Bruma, with the former suffering a knee problem and the latter recovering from hernia surgery.
Long-term injury casualty Jose Bosingwa returned to full training this week, but is still a week or two away from first team involvement.
Stoke have lost both their Premier League fixtures to date but put one in the wins column on Tuesday night when goals from new signing Jonathan Walters and Tuncay Sanli saw them past League Two side Shrewsbury 2-1 at the Britannia Stadium.
Club record signing Kenwyne Jones is struggling with an ankle problem he picked up at Wolves on the opening day of the season, but Liam Lawrence is fit to return to the squad after recovering from a groin issue.
Oh, and if you’re interested, you can get 20/1 on it finishing 6-0.
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