Dugout Discussion

Rudiger, Mount and Chilwell benched, as Alonso returns to Chelsea’s starting line-up

The continued rotation of Chelsea’s big squad sees Antonio Rudiger (£4.7m), Mason Mount (£7.1m) and Kai Havertz (£8.2m) amongst the substitutes for their hosting of West Bromwich Albion.

For those managers desperate to invest in the league’s strongest defence, the return of Thiago Silva (£5.6m) only worsens the headache. He and Kurt Zouma (£5.3m) step in for Rudiger and Andreas Christensen (£4.7m), with Marcos Alonso (£5.7m) starting ahead of Ben Chilwell (£5.8m) at left wing-back.

Alonso has been a popular transfer this week amongst the online Fantasy Premier League community, with many seeing the incredibly attacking defender as the ideal one-week punt ahead of a Gameweek 31 Wildcard. He wasn’t on international duty, so owners will be hoping for a repeat of his 14-point haul from beating Burnley 2-0 in Gameweek 21.

Former defender Thomas Tuchel’s arrived as head coach in January and quickly made Chelsea’s back line impenetrable, conceding only twice in 14 matches (all competitions) as they seek their eighth consecutive clean sheet.

However, these successful shut-outs are achieved with rotating personnel, with only Cesar Azpilicueta (£5.9m) seemingly assured of a starting spot. Rudiger, Zouma, Christensen and Thiago Silva share the remaining two spots, as Edouard Mendy (£5.2m) starts again in goal.

As detailed in Thursday’s feature, Mount (225), Havertz (212) and Chilwell (180) played in the majority of their country’s 270 minutes during the international break. Therefore, Tuchel has given them a breather, showcasing their squad depth by bringing in Christian Pulisic (£8.2m) and Mateo Kovacic (£5.3m).

Timo Werner (£9.2m) starts up front, his barren streak worsened by a terrible miss for Germany against North Macedonia. With one league goal from 1,350 minutes – the equivalent of 15 matches – his confidence seems shattered but the expected goals (xG) number of 6.34 in that spell suggests that he’s still getting in the right positions.

Reece James (£5.0m) starts at right wing-back, with Hakim Ziyech (£7.9m) keeping his starting spot.

As for West Brom, they were unchanged for four consecutive matches but Sam Allardyce has been forced into one change as loanee Conor Gallagher (£5.5m) cannot play against his parent club. He has been replaced by Semi Ajayi (£4.8m), suggesting a switch from 4-1-4-1 to a 5-4-1 formation.

Stuck in the relegation zone, the Baggies haven’t scored in their last three matches but have kept three clean sheets in the last five matches, ideal for Sam Johnstone (£4.5m) owners. They picked up 1-1 draws at Liverpool and Man City, so will feel a Stamford Bridge result is achievable.

Branislav Ivanovic (£4.4m) is on the bench against the club he made 377 appearances for.

GAMEWEEK 30 LINE-UPS

Chelsea XI (3-4-3): Mendy; Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Zouma; James, Jorginho, Kovacic, Alonso; Ziyech, Pulisic, Werner

West Bromwich Albion XI (5-4-1): Johnstone; Furlong, Ajayi, O’Shea, Bartley, Townsend; Phillips, Yokuslu, Maitland-Niles, Pereira; Diagne

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Marc Jobling Newcastle fan that spends far too much time thinking about FPL.”

1,090 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Gazwaz80
    • 1 Year
    2 months, 15 days ago

    I think for all the people gloating ( banter) or a lot of them, they still would have put Chelsea defs in but didn’t because of the international break, risk of rotation and the Champions league midweek. You cut call it a calculated risk but nobody would have foreseen a player getting sent off...

    1. Deulofail
      • 5 Years
      2 months, 15 days ago

      You are so wise!

      1. Gazwaz80
        • 1 Year
        2 months, 15 days ago

        I know, it’s a curse 😀

    2. Pukki Blinders
      • 1 Year
      2 months, 15 days ago

      The captain hindsight’s on here saw everything coming, even the exact minute the Silva red card was coming

    3. gogs67
        2 months, 15 days ago

        I did say a week or so ago tripling up on Chelsea defence was a bad move as statistically their cs run was bound to end, no team can keep up the stats they've been hitting.
        It showed against Leeds and Sheffield wed in the last couple of games, luck prevented them conceding.
        Saying all that I still brought Mendy in this week for the rest of the season lol.

    4. tbos83
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Werner has to be the worst signing since Joelinton

        1. Daniel Jebbison
          • 11 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Alexis Sanchez was worst

        2. Thomas Magnum
          • 5 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Wesley or whatever his name is for Villa as well has to be up there

      • Scots Gooner
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso so close

      • Daniel Jebbison
        • 11 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso post

        1. Daniel Jebbison
          • 11 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Saved by the defender too

      • diesel001
        • 4 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso hits the post

      • Eh, just one more thing ...
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 9 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso post ...

      • Disturbed
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso post again

      • Patio Kev
        • Fantasy Football Scout Member
        • 7 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        Alonso post - Lovely stuff

      • ZeBestee
        • 6 Years
        2 months, 15 days ago

        This Chelsea defence needs an overhaul. Zouma is not good enough, Christensen is bottom 10 quality at best, Thiago is old, Azpli is slowing down and just slow as a fullback and Alonso cant defend. Chilwell and James are the only ones who need to be retained. Both Keepers are also a shadow of calibre of the likes of Cech. Chelsea are just not going to keep many CS's.

        1. Daniel Jebbison
          • 11 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          And Rudiger ?

          1. ZeBestee
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Rudiger is not bad, bette than all what you have. Thiago was really good but age is the issue now.

        2. Pukki Blinders
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 15 days ago

          What explains their excellent defensive stats in recent months then?

          1. rnrd
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Kante

          2. Werner Brothers
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Hogging a lot of possession.
            The issue is no leader quality, dave/azpi is not JT class

        3. BDA Shadow
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          More clean sheets than goals conceded and you just wrote a paragraph on how bad they are? That's gold.

          1. ZeBestee
            • 6 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            They are more compact than Lampards time, but the players are the same ones. Good luck

            1. BDA Shadow
              • 6 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Zouma isn't a starter, Christensen has been flawless since Tuchel came in until today (which hasn't been his fault), Thiago is still one of the best CBs in the league, Azpi has been fine, and Alonso isn't in the team for defending but as you said there's Chilwell anyways. Criticizing Mendy for not being Cech, one of the best keepers of all time?

              1. ZeBestee
                • 6 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Haha, you meant Thiago was one of the best defenders, no doubt.

                Christensen is just not good enough, I have watched him so many times and he has been average at best. Zouma is not bad but has mistakes in him. Azpi was brilliant but he is much slower nowadays hence the 3 at the back. Mendy is average, otherwise we could have been seeing top saves at least once in a while, havent seen any since he joined and has mistakes in him

                1. BDA Shadow
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Now you're talking about seeing top saves when he hasn't conceded any goals. Complete waste of time.

                  1. ZeBestee
                    • 6 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Look at that 4th goal he conceded. Utter shambles.

        4. Lamplighters
          • Fantasy Football Scout Member
          • 7 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          I know.....right.

        5. Benjustjamin
          • 6 Years
          2 months, 15 days ago

          lol check see how many clean sheets they have already this season clever cloggs

        6. michael_mac11
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Another melt comment

        7. Pukki Blinders
          • 1 Year
          2 months, 15 days ago

          Alonso is the new Cancelo, all fart no poo. Can’t own him much longer

          1. TheBiffas
              2 months, 15 days ago

              He's the opposite. Gets attacking returns, but can't defend for a CS.

              1. Pukki Blinders
                • 1 Year
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Yup both frustrating to own in their own way

          2. Daniel Jebbison
            • 11 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Mount free kick attempt almost goal

          3. Pukki Party
            • 3 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Alonso captain fail for me

            1. AMBELLINA PRISE
              • Fantasy Football Scout Member
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Not fail but certainly unlucky

          4. Scots Gooner
            • Fantasy Football Scout Member
            • 4 Years
            2 months, 15 days ago

            Chances of Rudiger coming on pretty slim right?

            1. CROYDON DE BRUYNE
              • 4 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              No chance imo, Chelsea need a goal - if a CB gets injured they’ll go to a Back 4

            2. hullcityfan
              • 6 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Zero I would think - probably switch to back 4 if a defender gets injured

            3. TheBiffas
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Oh yes

              • Vazza
                • 1 Year
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Nah you are alright mate if you have him. Hopefully, you have a good first sub.

              • Scots Gooner
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Thats good, what I was thinking.

                Wanting Dias off the bench instead of Rudiger's 1 point.

            4. KAPTAIN KANE
              • 4 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Selling Pereira and buying Rudiger for a -4 this week.
              At least things can only get better!

              1. g40steve
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 3 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Ouch

              2. pingissimus
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 2 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Ouch

                Very unlucky that

              3. MIGHTY JOE
                • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                • 1 Year
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Yikes

            5. Daniel Jebbison
              • 11 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Azpi chance created

              1. Pukki Blinders
                • 1 Year
                2 months, 15 days ago

                And what does that achieve

                1. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  More BPS

                  1. Daniel Jebbison
                    • 11 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    And adds to the appeal for future GWs

                  2. Pukki Blinders
                    • 1 Year
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Why would he get bonus points when Chelsea have already shipped 2 and no attacking returns

            6. Daniel Jebbison
              • 11 Years
              2 months, 15 days ago

              Come oooon Mount goal and assist needed

              1. TheBiffas
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Thisss

                • Eh, just one more thing ...
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  I’d take an assist at this point ...

                  1. Daniel Jebbison
                    • 11 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Goal is certain imo, the assist is the bonus

              2. KAPTAIN KANE
                • 4 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Not watching the game but can see Johnstone got an assist!
                How did that happen??

                1. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  He did get an assist

                2. hullcityfan
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Long ball, poor defending but great chip finish by Pereira

                3. Thomas Magnum
                  • 5 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Longgggg kick

                4. Fitzy.
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  The guy he passed to scored

                5. Fred54
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Clearly you lack a basic imagination.

                6. the dom 1
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 6 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Long ball to Pereira lad

                7. The Mighty Hippo
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 4 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Allerdyce hoofball.

                8. Eh, just one more thing ...
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Route one cleared up the park ... P man latches on and finishes well ...

              3. Daniel Jebbison
                • 11 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                James chance created Zouma header missed the goal

              4. Kane Lane
                • 6 Years
                2 months, 15 days ago

                Werner such fantasy waste man for his price. I'm a waste man for actually bringing him in

                1. Milkman Bruno
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Yep. I was feeling quietly confident until his miss for Germany

                2. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Alonso gives amazing ball in the box to Werner, Werner rotates and practically poo on it, no shot and ball is lost

                3. ⭐ Bemba_Da ⭐
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Pereira one on one and misses

                4. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Pereira almost hatrick

                5. It’s gonna Ben Mee
                  • 7 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Meslier >

                  A) Mendy (have Azpi)
                  B) Pat

                  My other keeper is Martinez.

                6. ⭐ Bemba_Da ⭐
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  OMG Robinson

                  1. Eh, just one more thing ...
                    • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                    • 9 Years
                    2 months, 15 days ago

                    Stunning finish.

                7. tiger
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  3-1 😀

                8. Hazz
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 3 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  1 - 3 West Brom

                9. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  3:1

                10. Eh, just one more thing ...
                  • Fantasy Football Scout Member
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Goal WBA

                11. Daniel Jebbison
                  • 11 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  Scenes

                12. Jebiga
                  • 9 Years
                  2 months, 15 days ago

                  hahaha