CONFIRMED: Chelsea line-up - Mata not in squad and Lampard on bench

Here is the Chelsea line-up for the late kick-off against Fulham.

Starting XI: Cech, Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Cole, Ramires, Mikel, Oscar, Hazard, Schurrle, Eto’o

Subs: Schwarzer, Azpilicueta, Essien, Lampard, De Bruyne, Willian, Torres

Chelsea go into this evening’s match against Fulham knowing nothing short of three points will do. And while they have not lost at home to their London rivals since 1979, they will know that four of the last five league meetings between the two sides have ended in draws.

Blues’ captain John Terry should return having been rested for the Champions League match against FC Basle, while Ramires’s European suspension does not apply to domestic matters.

Having been told by Jose Mourinho that Oscar is his preferred number 10, all eyes will be on Juan Mata this afternoon, with his absence or his presence generating a similar number of headlines.

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Fulham can call on Darren Bent, while his strike-partner Dimitar Berbatov underwent a late fitness test. Bryan Ruiz, Aaron Hughes, Matthew Briggs and Maarten Stekelenburg are all out injured.

With Chelsea’s next league game away to Tottenham Hotspur, anything less than three points this evening just will not do, and Mourinho knows it.

What is your prediction for the game?

image: © geetarchurchy

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