Title chasers Chelsea welcome bottom club Sunderland to Stamford Birdge on Saturday (Watch live on NBC, 12:30 p.m. ET and online via Live Extra) with both teams in desperate need of three points.
Chelsea will want a win to set themselves up for a potential title decider away at Liverpool next week, while Sunderland will be looking to build off their impressive draw away at Manchester City in midweek.
Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea are in the thick of a PL title race and charging toward the UEFA Champions League final, as they play Atletico Madrid away in the Spanish capital this week. With one eye on UCL success, they can’t afford to slip up at home to a desperate Black Cats side. If they win, the Blues will be top of the PL standings on Saturday evening.
Gus Poyet’s men were leading until the final minute against Man City but a late error from Vito Mannone threw two vital points away from the Mackems. They have only won once in their last 10 games and need a miracle to stay up, can ex-Chelsea midfielder Poyet shock his former club on Saturday?
In team news Chelsea start Mark Schwarzer, who are without Petr Cech and Eden Hazard. Samuel Eto’o and Oscar come back into the Chelsea starting line-up, while Sunderland are unchanged with U.S. international Jozy Altidore coming back into the 18-man squad.
Chelsea: Schwarzer; Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta; Ramires, Matic; Willian, Oscar, Salah; Eto’o. Subs: Hilario, David Luiz, Mikel, Lampard, Torres, Schurrle, Ba
Sunderland: Mannone, Vergini, Alonso, Brown, O’Shea, Cattermole, Colback, Larsson, Johnson, Borini, Wickham. Subs: Celustka, Altidore, Ba, Giaccherini, Scocco, Mavrias, Ustari.