Chelsea Team News vs Nottingham Forest: Pulisic, Giroud, Alonso, Hefele


Chelsea FC are tied for third, all-time, in FA Cup final wins with eight and tied for fourth in title game appearances with 13. The Blues have been very successful in the tournament recently too; winning it all in 2018 and finishing runners-up in 2017.

Sunday sees the west London side commencing their quest for more domestic glory, as they’ll host Nottingham Forest for a third round fixture. They’ll wear special shirts for the occasion too (more on that here). In turning to the team news for this one, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Marko van Ginkel remain long term absentees while shorter term absentees Olivier Giroud (ankle) and Marcos Alonso (back) are also still out of commission.

Meanwhile American Christian Pulisic returned to the lineup yesterday in the draw against Brighton & Hove Albion. He played for the first time since Dec. 14, starting and going 66 minutes. The 21-year-old, like the team overall lately, has had some issues finishing.

Pulisic, who has had a very up and down first year at Chelsea, owned up to it.

“We said at half time that we had the chance to kill the game and we just weren’t able to,” the left winger said.

“We couldn’t get the goal and in the end they found an unbelievable goal. So now it is about doing a bit more to keep going, attack and create chances and just have that killer instinct. Just a little bit of that, we are missing that.

“I can do better with that as well. Just being more clinical in the final third, finding the right pass or shot and scoring the goals. That’s both mental and technical. After we scored the first goal it was just about continuing and just not stopping there, making it two or three and putting the game to bed.”

“We’ve had troubles with that this year and then in the end, they fought until the end, scored a great goal and that is how it goes.”

On the other side, Nottingham Forest have a fair number of injuries to deal with as well.

Tendayi Darikwa (ACL), Michael Hefele (achilles), Yohan Benalouane (hip) and Yuri Ribeiro (knee) are all out for this one.

Chelsea FC vs Nottingham Forest FYIs

Kickoff: Sun Jan 5, 2:01pm

Chelsea FC Starting XI prediction: go to this link

Referee: Peter Bankes

fa cup

All time series: Chelsea wins 39, Draws 28, Nottingham Forest wins 26

Prediction: Chelsea 3, Nottingham Forest 1

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

You can follow Banks, a former writer for NBC and Chicago on Twitter here and his cat on Instagram at this link.

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