Chelsea will face Ukrainian side Dynamo Kyiv at Stamford Bridge tomorrow in the Europa League Round of 16.
The Blues are locked in a 3-way battle for a spot in the top 4 along with Arsenal and Manchester United. With their domestic fate largely undecided, Sarri will want to progress as far as possible in this competition as he will be keen to keep an option alive in their quest for Champions League football next season. And failure to achieve that might spell the doom for the manager and a couple of players.
But this is a tie they will be confident of winning, and the Italian will want a handsome lead going into the second leg which will give him a chance to make the desired rotations.
CHELSEA TEAM NEWS
Maurizio Sarri is expected to have his entire squad available which is a luxury seldom found in top teams now.
PREDICTED CHELSEA LINEUP VS DYNAMO KYIV (4-3-3)
Willy Caballero might get a start even though Kepa was preferred in the first leg of the last round. The Argentinian is a tried and tested campaigner and was decent against Spurs recently and there is no reason why he can’t do the job in the Europa League.
Cesar Azpilicueta has been ever-present across competitions and should start at right back again. Antonio Rudiger might make way for David Luiz here after a surprisingly busy day at Fulham. Luiz is likely to partner Andreas Christensen in central defence.
Marcos Alonso will hope for a start at left-back. He has been rotated with Emerson recently, and it is likely to continue.
Jorginho should start in deep midfield as Sarri is likely to aim for a comfortable win in the first leg. Mateo Kovacic and Ross Barkley might get starts in advanced midfield with a rest for N’Golo Kante a possibility.
Eden Hazard deserves a rest and should get one against Dynamo. He will be a fantastic option to call upon if needed for Sarri. While the Italian might well decide to go with Pedro and Willian on the wings, a start for Callum Hudson Odoi against Dynamo at Stamford Bridge is an excellent opportunity for the young winger to gain some confidence.
Pedro came off the bench against Fulham and should start on the right while Olivier Giroud is likely to lead the line.