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Birmingham v Chelsea (PL) 20/11/2010 KO 15:00 GMT


Eton Blue at the Chelsea Megastore

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Pretty likely we will see Bruma ahead of Ferreira in the starting line up. Personally I would also like to see McEachran start ahead of Ramires or Zhirkov however I am not convinced that is going to happen.

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Would it be an idea to give Kakuta a start? Our frontline's been pretty shocking recently and it would allow Malouda to drop into midfield, who did well there at the end of last season and is probably a better option there than Zhirkov. Bruma should start, but it wouldn't surprise me either if we stuck with Paulo at CB.

Need a win to steady ourselves while our players recover from injuries.

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I'd like to see Bruma start,hopefully he didn't start against Sunderland because it was a late(ish) withdrawl of JT so he was simply not prepared.Now with a full week to get him ready I hope he gets his chance.

Malouda must drop to midfield.He would provide much needed strength on the ball and a driving ability that is missing without Essien and Frank.

Didier,Nico and Kalou up top,with our defence as is we need as many goal threats as possible in the X1.

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Birmingham away is a tough enough fixture as it, without the injury worries we have. I can't say I'm at all confident.

They're going to defend deep and narrow and we're gonna have to battle hard, I just hope the players are up for the slog.

When we know who will be partnering Ivanovic, that'll give us a good idea of who Carlo has in mind to fill in at centre back consistently until Terry or Alex return. Unless we have another car crash defensive performance of course...

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Someone needs to wrap Ivanoic in a blanket and make sure he will be available on Saturday, is he playing in any international game tonight? We could see a central defence of Drogba and Ferriera if we aren't careful. Swap Malouda and Zhirkov, I actually think Zhirkov is quite good going forward as a winger. We need to play with some urgency instead of pass the ball around for 10 minutes to get into the mood. As I see it, this is either a new beginning or start of the end for us. If we can survive the next 2-3 matches, things will get better.

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Well this is going to be a test of our strength or lack thereof during the next few weeks. Birmingham and Newcastle are a good measure to start with things heating up around the Xmas period. Hopefully Carlo gets it right in midfield and the back this time. I’ll take the point and remain top. If things get to bad, we’ll find it tough to get back in the race if these injuries continue and we somehow fall behind 4 points or more. Utd will kick on as they normally do after Xmas, I fear Arsenal are gaining confidence which will make things even tougher. Still we must remain confident that we can hang on in there till the injured players return. :beg:

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Without Alex, Terry, Lampard and Essien this game will be a tough one. I would even go as far as saying Brum has the upperhand. I have a feeling we will line up a very defensive setup. Maybe Mikel and Ramires both lying deep in the midfield. I hope Paulo is nowhere near the starting line-up. Give a chance to Bruma or play Mikel as CB.

We need Drogba back at his old self or the goals just wont come. Hope his malaria is long gone by the weekend. Anelka and Malouda also need to be at their best.

A victory will be a surprise result for me so I will go with 0-0 or 1-1.

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My team would be:

...........................Cech

Bosingwa............Ivan (Captain)........Bruma................Cole

...........................Mikel.......................

Kalou.............Josh.............................Malouda

......Drogba..............Sturridge....................

Maybe not that exact formation but those personnel

Subs:

Turnball, Van Aanholt, Ramires, Anelka, Borini, Kakuta, Zhirkov.

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My team would be:

...........................Cech

Bosingwa............Ivan (Captain)........Bruma................Cole

...........................Mikel.......................

Kalou.............Josh.............................Malouda

......Drogba..............Sturridge....................

Maybe not that exact formation but those personnel

Subs:

Turnball, Van Aanholt, Ramires, Anelka, Borini, Kakuta, Zhirkov.

I'd go with that. If we replace Bruma with JT (when he's fit), that could be a team that lasts a while

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My team would be:

...........................Cech

Bosingwa............Ivan (Captain)........Bruma................Cole

...........................Mikel.......................

Kalou.............Josh.............................Malouda

......Drogba..............Sturridge....................

Maybe not that exact formation but those personnel

Subs:

Turnball, Van Aanholt, Ramires, Anelka, Borini, Kakuta, Zhirkov.

Everything is right, but I would play Drogba as a capitan.

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My birthday weekend as well and having people over watching the game who don't like Chelsea that much so I hope the boys step-up but im not that confident with all the injuries, but obviously we have the squad for it to win this game but it will be hard, just like last year.

Come on Chelsea!

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haven't even read the Sunder thread as depressed after that game. However our failure to score is a problem, and the fact that we rarely looked like it a bigger one.

Not sure whether away game against Bham is the time to do it but there need to be some changes.

I would like to give Sturridge a chance at starting, just one, and for my money it would be instead of Drogs who I feel has been ineffectual recently. Kalou always seems to do better as a sub than starting.

I don't like to start a 17 year old but Ramires was not up to the required standard. Just got caught in possession too many times, so Johs it is

In defence not sure what to say but Paulo has never convinced in the centre.

Leadership is the hardest to replace factor with Terry and Lampard both out, and Essien another senior player also missing.

Maybe drogs should play because he can provide leadership. Its guts and determination that are required now.

Tactically the choice is to go into our shell and play defensive for a few games until we find our feet with the new team, because that is what it is, or to go straight back on the fast counter attack.

Well I am expecting more bad news for the next few weeks, so I'll be putting on the hard had before venturing out in the open.

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Our best team:

......................Cech.......................

Bosingwa.......Ivan......Terry.......Cole

.......................Mikel.......................

..........Lampard..........Essien.............

.....Anelka......Drogba......Malouda......

subs: Turnbull, Alex, Yuri, Yossi, Ramires, Josh, Kalou, Sturridge

VS.

Our currently available team:

......................Cech.........................

Bosingwa.....Ivan........Bruma........Cole

........................Mikel.......................

.............Josh...............Malouda.........

....Anelka.........Drogba..........Kalou.....

sub: Turnbull, Van Aanholt, Ferreira, Ramires, Yuri, Kakuta, Borini

For the first time in years, I can say that we are a truly weakened side.

Can we recall Mancienne? Does anyone know?

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Ivory coast say Drogba still has malaria not good for saturday.

Chelsea totem Didier Drogba is still suffering from malaria, say Ivory Coast officials

By SPORTSMAIL REPORTER

Last updated at 11:01 PM on 17th November 2010

Comments (0)

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Under the weather: Drogba

Ivory Coast officials claim Didier Drogba is still suffering from malaria.

The Chelsea striker was declared fit by his club last week and played in the defeat to Sunderland on Sunday.

But he turned up for international duty and immediately ruled out of the friendly in Poland.

'The player underwent tests that revealed the persistence of malaria,' read a statement from the Africans on their official website.

'Didier Drogba has been declared unfit to take part in the friendly match against Poland.'

The 32-year-old is likely to be assessed again ahead of Saturday’s trip to Birmingham at St Andrew's.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/football/article-1330675/Chelsea-totem-Didier-Drogba-suffering-malaria-say-Ivory-Coast-officials.html#ixzz15acoinye

Edited by bcarroll
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Are our medical staff really missing that Drogba still has Malaria?

From our current available squad I'd expect us to start

..................Cech

Bosingwa..Ivan...Paulo...Cole

.................Mikel

.........Ramires....Zhirkov

..Anelka...................Malouda

...................Drogba

Subs: Bruma, PVA, Turnbull, Kalou, Sturridge, Josh, Kakuta

Scott

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Are our medical staff really missing that Drogba still has Malaria?

From our current available squad I'd expect us to start

..................Cech

Bosingwa..Ivan...Paulo...Cole

.................Mikel

.........Ramires....Zhirkov

..Anelka...................Malouda

...................Drogba

Subs: Bruma, PVA, Turnbull, Kalou, Sturridge, Josh, Kakuta

Scott

That's the same starting 11 that just got thrahed by Sunderland so I bloody hope not!!!

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as i mentioned in the other thread we get overrun in midfield when zhirkov and ramieres both play because they are too erratic in possession and get caught dallying on the ball. so hopeful mceachran starts but i honestly can't see it

Cech

Bos --- Ivan --- Bruma --- Cole

Mikel

McEachran --- Rameries

Kalou --- Sturridge --- Anelka

that would be my starting line up if I was carlo

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