Chelsea were without two of their key players for the win over Norwich City on Thursday and both remain doubts ahead of today’s match.
Despite a slight scare when Teemu Pukki’s penalty halved the deficit midway through the second-half, Chelsea secured a comfortable victory over Norwich on Thursday night, doing so without either Cesar Azpilicueta and Christian Pulisic.
Thomas Tuchel revealed post-match that both players were late changes with both of them absent from the game through illness.
“Christian did not feel well in the morning.” Tuchel said. “He had two bad nights and felt sick. Had a change of temperature, felt hot and then cold. So we decided to leave him at home to rest. Last-minute change.
“Azpi at half time didn’t feel well. Stomach problems, [he] looked pale. So we decided to change.”
Whilst definitely not ruled out of today’s game, the pair do remain doubts and may not be risked by Tuchel who might have one eye on their FA Cup quarter final clash with Middlesbrough coming up on the horizon.
Reece James will definitely be missing for the Blues after suffering a hamstring injury, however.
Newcastle on the other hand, will be sweating over the fitness of Allan Saint-Maximin and Joelinton who missed the win at St Mary’s.
The Brazilian, who is managing an issue with his groin, did travel to the south coast and is probably more likely to feature at Stamford Bridge than Saint-Maximin who is recovering from a non-Covid illness.
The Magpies have won just once at Stamford Bridge in the Premier League and have lost their last nine games in all competitions away against Chelsea.