Sheffield United v Chelsea: Predicted line-ups, referee watch, Chelsea dangerman and history lesson as Blades take on Blues at Stamford Bridge

Sheffield United will look to get over last weekend’s defeat at home to Leicester City when they face Chelsea at Stamford Bridge this afternoon.

Saturday, 31st August 2019, 06:00 am
Chelsea's Croatian midfielder Mateo Kovacic (Photo credit should read OLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images)

Predicted teams:

CHELSEA: Kepa Arrizabalaga, Cesar Azpilicueta, Andreas Christensen, Kurt Zouma, Emerson Palmieri, Mateo Kovacic, Jorginho, Ross Barkley, Christian Pulisic, Mason Mount, Tammy Abraham

SHEFFIELD UNITED: Dean Henderson, Chris Basham, John Egan, Jack O'Connell, Enda Stevens, George Baldock, Oliver Norwood, Luke Freeman, John Lundstram, Billy Sharp, Oli McBurnie

Referee:

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STUART ATTWELL

Aged 36 and from Warwickshire, Attwell will be assisted by Scott Ledger and Andrew Garratt at Stamford Bridge tomorrow, while Tom Nield is scheduled to be the fourth official. Andrew Madley, who oversaw Sheffield Uniited's game against Leicester City last weekend, will be in charge of VAR and supported by Andy Halliday. Only one of Attwell's three appointments so far this term has come in the Premier League.

History lesson

Tomorrow's match will be Sheffield United's first appearance at Stamford Bridge since March 2007, when a season ending injury to centre-forward Rob Hulse contributed towards their relegation from the Premier League. Twelve years later, they returned to the top-flight after achieving their second promotion in the space of three seasons under manager Chris Wilder.

Frank Lampard, now the Chelsea manager, was in the team which beat the visitors from South Yorkshire 3-0, thanks to goals from Andriy Shevchenko, Salomon Kalou and Michael Ballack. Although United have lost all of their last three outings against the West Londoners, they did win 1-0 at Bramall Lane in November 1993.

United's last away win over Chelsea came a year earlier, when Brian Deane scored the winning goal after Andy Townsend had cancelled out Adrian Littlejohn's opener.

One to watch:

Mateo Kovacic

Capped 52 times by Croatia, the midfielder arrived at Chelsea last season but has excelled since being deployed in a slightly different role - operating alongside Jorginho - rather than on the left as favoured by Frank Lampard's predecessor Maurizio Sarri. Aged 25, Kovacic's loan from Real Madrid was turned into a permanent £45m transfer earlier this summer despite the Londoners being handed a transfer embargo.