Chelsea team news: Alvaro Morata OUT and Eden Hazard a doubt for Bournemouth clash in Carabao Cup
23rd December 2018

The Spaniard is not expected to return to first team action until Boxing Day after twisting his knee during the 2-2 draw against Vidi last Thursday.

While Eden Hazard remains a doubt to face the Cherries at Stamford Bridge as he nurses a foot injury.

Speaking after the 2-1 win against Brighton – in which the Belgian maestro netted the winner – Maurizio Sarri played down the severity of his problem.

The Italian said: "Eden is okay. It’s only a knock. I spoke with the doctor and he told me it’s not a serious problem.

"He maybe needs one day to rest, two days maximum. No more.”

With Leicester to face Chelsea in West London on the weekend, Sarri is likely to rest Hazard against Eddie Howe's men.

Pedro and Willian could start either side of Giroud up top, while teenage winger Callum Hudson-Odoi is another possibility of being included in the line-up.

Ross Barkley, Cesc Fabregas and Mateo Kovacic are all in line to start later in a midfield three, though Ruben Loftus-Cheek will be vying to make another impression.

Second-choice goalkeeper Willy Caballero will make his fifth appearance of the season between the sticks, with Davide Zappacosta and Emerson to feature as the full-backs.

And with Gary Cahill completely out of favour under Sarri, the ex-Napoli boss could start Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen as his preferred centre-backs.

Welsh international Ethan Ampadu is unlikely to be used in this important fixture, with David Luiz almost certainly to be rested.

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