Chelsea XI vs Aston Villa: Starting lineup, confirmed team news - Saul Niguez makes debut

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 (ES Composite)
(ES Composite)

Romelu Lukaku is fit to start Chelsea’s clash with Aston Villa on Saturday despite concerns over a thigh problem.

The Belgium striker had scans on the issue before returning from international duty this week – but has trained without problems this week and is set to lead Thomas Tuchel’s attack.

Behind him, Saul Niguez makes his debut for the club after signing from Atletico Madrid.

Thiago Silva has also been cleared to play and starts after Brazil confirmed that players who did not travel during the international break will not be handed a five-day suspension.

There are starts for Trevoh Chalobah and Callum Hudson-Odoi, who appears to again be utilised at right wing back.

N’Golo Kante will miss the game after failing to overcome an ankle injury suffered against Liverpool before the international break, but it is hoped he will be back for Tuesday’s Champions League tie against Zenit.

Christian Pulisic is also out with an ankle problem picked up with the USA – ruling him out for 10 days.

That means it is Hakim Ziyech and Kai Havertz who will support Lukaku.

Chelsea starting XI (3-4-3): Mendy; Chalobah, Thiago Silva, Rudiger; Hudson-Odoi, Saul, Kovacic, Alonso; Ziyech, Lukaku, Havertz

Saturday 5.30pm GMT, Sky Sports

Venue: Stamford Bridge

Referee: Stuart Atwell

Injured: Kante (ankle), Pulisic (ankle)

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