Jose Mourinho makes his return to Stamford Bridge for the first time since being dismissed by Roman Abramovic back in December 2015.
Just two points separate the two sides, and Sunday’s encounter, despite coming early in the season, promises to be crucial in the context of an already sizzling title race.
Mourinho made seven changes from the side that started at Anfield on Monday night for their Europa League encounter with Fenerbahce, with Paul Pogba, David de Gea and Eric Bailly the only players keeping their place.
The 53-year-old will be keen to restore his side to full strength for the clash with Antonio Conte’s side.
Ander Herrera was an effervescent, unyielding force against Liverpool, controlling what was a furious midfield battle all evening. His inclusion on Sunday will be crucial to stopping the likes of Willian, Oscar and Eden Hazard, who all tend to interchange and drift inside.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who vowed to rectify his substandard display against Jurgen Klopp’s side this weekend, will return to the starting XI. He marked his last visit to Stamford Bridge with a goal, and his battle with former teammate David Luiz promises to be enticing.
Mourinho will be keen to field Luke Shaw and Antonio Valencia, his first choice full-backs, after resting them in midweek, while Daley Blind looks set to step in for Chris Smalling, who picked up a muscular injury against Fenerbahce.