Chelsea make two changes to the side named for their last Premier League game, the goalless draw here with Southampton. Mateo Kovacic and Pedro take the places of Ross Barkley and Alvaro Morata.
Newcastle make three changes to the teamsheet handed in for the home defeat to Manchester United. Fabian Schar, Mohamed Diame and Paul Dummett make way for Florian Lejeune, Ciaran Clark and the 21-year-old midfielder Sean Longstaff, who makes his first League start for the Magpies.
Chelsea: Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Alonso, Kante, Jorginho, Kovacic, Pedro, Hazard, Willian.
Subs: Barkley, Caballero, Giroud, Hudson-Odoi, Christensen, Emerson Palmieri, Ampadu.
Newcastle United: Dubravka, Yedlin, Lejeune, Lascelles, Clark, Ritchie, Perez, Longstaff, Hayden, Atsu, Rondon.
Subs: Schar, Murphy, Fernandez, Manquillo, Joselu, Sterry, Woodman.
Referee: Chris Kavanagh (Lancashire).
Chelsea’s last couple of Premier League home games haven’t gone exactly to plan: a 0-0 draw with Southampton and a 0-1 loss to Leicester. So they’ll welcome Newcastle United to Stamford Bridge this evening with open arms. Here’s how this particular fixture has panned out recently: 3-0, 3-1, 5-1, 2-0, 3-0, 2-0.
The arrival of the struggling Magpies will be a sight for sore eyes. Especially as Rafa Benitez’s men have only won one of their last nine matches. Chelsea might not be firing on all cylinders at present, but they were the better side against Spurs midweek in the first leg of their League Cup semi, despite the result, and will be hopeful their overall performance at Wembley is a promise of better things to come.
But while Newcastle may be labouring, that doesn’t mean they’re super-easy to pick off. They’ve only lost three of their ten matches on the road this season. They’ve won at Huddersfield and Burnley. On another day, with a bit more luck, they could have got something at Manchester City and Manchester United. Rafa knows how to set up his side in Resolute Mode all right. So nothing’s certain.
Chelsea are desperate for the win that’ll keep them on course for a top-four finish. Newcastle are desperate for the points that’ll keep their heads above water. It’s set up nicely … and it’s on!
Kick off: 5.30pm GMT.