The Blues host Bundesliga side Schalke at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday evening in the Champions League and Mourinho will want to see a response from his team to the weekend’s defeat in the Premier League.
1) Frank Lampard
Super Frank is and has been one of Chelsea’s most loyal servants and key players over the last decade – his influence on the team, on the pitch and in the dressing room has been a massive part of the Blues’ success over the years but Lampard had a poor game on Saturday and no will be any less disappointed than the man himself. Mourinho should move Oscar forward and Ramires back to join John Obi Mikel in central and defensive midfield.
In: John Obi Mikel (DM)
2) David Luiz
As I discussed here on Monday in the aftermath of the defeat, Luiz was inconsistent on Saturday and made too many mistakes. He gives away possession too easily and his positioning is naïve sometimes. His anticipation and awareness of danger needs to improve and his overall work-rate needs to increase. I think Gary Cahill is the best option to partner John Terry.
I’d also give Branislav Ivanovic the chop too and put Cesar Azpillicueta in and drop Ashley Cole for Ryan Bertrand. That would make a real statement – no one is safe. If you don’t play well, you don’t play.
In: Gary Cahill (CD)
3) Juan Mata
The Spanish playmaker hasn’t had the easiest of season since Mourinho returned to the Bridge – he’s seen a reduced level of opportunity and has been challenged by the boss to work harder and on Saturday he was well below his usually impeccably high standards. Mourinho should move Oscar forward where he’s most dangerous and throw Willian in wide for Mata.
In: Willian (RW)
4) Eden Hazard
The Belgian is another one Chelsea’s best players (ordinarily) but he was poor by his own high standards on Saturday. His overall play was sloppy, lacklustre and ineffectual and he needs to improve his form and commitment for the Blues and continue in the manner in which he did last term. At the moment he is far from his best.
In: Andre Schurrle (LW)
5) Samuel Eto’o
For all intents and purposes Eto’o has been pretty useless so far for Chelsea and whilst there is no doubt about his talent, his form and confidence are certainly a concern at present. With Fernando Torres injured, I would hope Demba Ba might get another chance to impress Mourinho.
In: Demba Ba (CF)
image: © Ben Sutherland