Chelsea FC vs Sheffield United Team News: Pulisic, Havertz, Fleck


As we wrote a couple months ago, it might be time to start getting concerned about how injury prone Christian Pulisic is. Given that Chelsea FC have a special training programme for him, as revealed by manager Frank Lampard towards the end of September, they seem to have concerns as well.

His latest injury, of the hamstring variety again, isn’t as serious as initially feared. He could be ready for Saturday’s Premier League clash at home against Sheffield United.

Chelsea FC vs Sheffield United FYIs
Kickoff: 12:30pm ET Saturday, Nov 7, Stamford Bridge
Odds: Chelsea win (-275), Sheffield United win (+725) Draw is +400
Chelsea Starting XI Prediction: go here

Christian Pulisic is a big deal obviously, or as Sinhue Mendoza, Media Relations for the International Champions Cup, put it: “the next big thing, the kid.” Mendoza, who previously worked in communications for US Soccer continued:

“I think it’s great that we have an American there that’s that good, and has proven that he can be there. It’s one thing to make it there, but it’s another to actually play and play well, because it’s hard as hell to be succesful in the EPL- especially at a big club.”

Elsewhere, we learned late Wednesday/early Thursday that Kai Havertz is in self-isolation after having tested positive test for COVID-19, while demoted goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga remains out of commission with a shoulder injury.

Flipping over to the Blades, John Fleck and Lys Mousset have now returned to training, but this game will likely come too soon for them. It appears their returns will have to come after the international break.

Sheffield were surprisingly good last season, staying in contention for a Europa League qualification slot up until the very end.

This year however, has gotten off to a very rough start. They currently sit in the drop zone, the league’s penultimate side.

“We have struggled for goals,” said manager Chris Wilder.

“The competition that we are up against is intense. Chances don’t come freely, especially if not playing with fluidity, these things happen. I am a big believer you can’t have it both ways. You can’t be an attacking side and then be safe at the back.”

He also realizes what a tough matchup this is for his side.

“They (Chelsea) have so many attacking players and it’s getting that balance right with the players at our disposal. And they have brought some fabulous players in at the top end of the pitch.”

Prediction: Chelsea 3, Sheffield 0

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB NationFollow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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  1. chelsea 2 sheffield 2

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