After waiting 23 days, Chelsea boss Graham Potter will finally get the chance to take charge of the Blues in domestic competition, as they make the trip to Selhurst Park to take on Patrick Viera’s Crystal Palace side.
What’s the latest?
The wait is something that was out of the hands of the Chelsea boss, with his claims in the pre-match press conference on Friday suggesting he is more than eager to take the reigns of the Stamford Bridge outfit in domestic competition.
“Probably a bit of both if I’m honest. Used a bit of time to get to know people but at the same time we’re itching to play.
“We couldn’t control anything in terms of how things have panned out, we’ve had to make the most of it.”
But whilst Potter will be relishing the task of steering Chelsea to their fourth win of the season, it may not be with his so-called strongest XI, as former Brighton favourite Marc Cucurella looks as though he could miss out with illness.
Asked on the availability of his players going into this weekend, Potter said: “They’re fine in terms of coming through the rehab stages and NG (N’Golo Kante) has been on the grass. Maybe next week for him. Bit of illness for Marc Cucurella.”
Potter will be gutted
Ahead of a clash that will set the pace for Chelsea, after 23 days without a domestic game, Potter will be gutted at the potential forced omission of Cucurella.
The Spaniard was a delight for Potter during the pair’s shared spell at Brighton and his presence on the left-flank helps to establish balance across the defensive-third.
In the Chelsea boss’ first game against RB Salzburg in the Champions League, Cucurella stood out once more, with a performance that saw him achieve the highest rating on the pitch with 8.1, as per FotMob.
It’s a big blow for Potter, who would have appreciated the defensive acumen that Cucurella brings against a fast-breaking Crystal Palace side.