Chelsea to host Palace, desire to continue winning


Chelsea welcome Crystal Palace to Stamford Bridge on Saturday, hoping to extend their winning streak in the Premier League to six games, agencies write.

Frank Lampard's men come into the fixture in fine form, having fought back from 4-1 down on Tuesday night to draw 4-4 with Ajax in the Champions League. Last time out in the league, the Blues edged past Watford, with Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic finding the net on that occasion.

Crystal Palace, meanwhile, are quietly going about their business in the top flight, currently sitting ninth in the table. However, Roy Hodgson's men are without a win in three matches, following their home defeat to high-flying Leicester last time out. The Eagles will be keen to respond and, as a result, this could make for a fascinating London derby.

Lampard will be forced into making a change to his starting lineup for the upcoming clash, as midfielder Jorginho is suspended. As a result, N'Golo Kante is expected to return to the starting lineup, following his recent injury troubles. Further to this, the Blues may also be without Mason Mount, after he limped out of Tuesday night's clash with Ajax.

In more positive news, Andreas Christensen was part of the Champions League squad in midweek and is in contention to feature, while Ross Barkley is also expected to return for the clash with Palace. Reece James may also be rewarded with a starting role, after his fine performance. Elsewhere, Antonio Rudiger (groin), Ruben Loftus-Cheek (achilles) and Marco van Ginkel (knee) all remain out.

Crystal Palace manager Hodgson, meanwhile, has a number of injury concerns to contend with, as a number of his players have picked up knocks in recent weeks. Key player James McArthur is a doubt for Saturday's game. after suffering a back injury in the defeat to Leicester.
Gary Cahill and Cheikhou Kouyate collided heads in the Eagles' tussle with Leicester, but both are expected to be fit and available for selection. Andros Townsend may also feature if he is able to pass a late fitness test. Forward Connor Wickham and centre-back Mamadou Sakho both remain out.

The two teams have gone up against each other on 54 occasions, with Chelsea boasting the better record. The Blues have won 27 of these 54 meetings, while the Eagles have only managed to prevail 12 times. The two sides have shared the spoils on 15 occasions. The last meeting between the two saw Chelsea come out on top in what was a tight contest. N'Golo Kante scored the all-important goal to ensure his side left with all three points.

The Blues come into this match in fine form, despite recently being knocked out of the Carabao Cup by Manchester United. They produced a scintillating display to fight back from 4-1 down on Tuesday night to draw with Ajax in the Champions League. The home side were certainly aided by the two red cards shown to the Dutch side's two centre-backs, but nonetheless Lampard's men displayed tremendous spirit to keep fighting.

The west London side overcame Watford in their last match in the league, with Abraham and Pulisic giving the away side a comfortable lead. Although the Hornets did pull one back from the spot late on, they were unable to find a leveller. Crystal Palace are without a win in three matches, but in those three matches they faced Manchester City, Arsenal and Leicester. While they did fall to defeats against both Leicester and Manchester City, Hodgson's men came from two goals down to draw 2-2 with Arsenal at the Emirates.