Preview: Chelsea vs Blackpool
They say you have to beat the teams around you if you want to do well in this league, and if Blackpool want to achieve a European spot then they have to start by winning at 'The Bridge` on Sunday in what will be the Seasiders first of 3 scheduled Sky games.
Alright so Europe might be a distant dream at the moment but after a spectacular team performance at St James Park last week and with Chelsea involved in a mid week match in the Champions League you can be rest assured that Blackpool will be up to not only being the first team to take points off Chelsea but to show to the world that Blackpool are not the Premier League`s newest pushovers.
To find the last time these two met in the league, you have to travel all the way back to the 1976/77 season where Blackpool drew 2-2 with the London club. Blackpool went onto finish 5th that season and Chelsea finished 2nd in what was then the old Division 2. The two have met recently in the League Cup back in 1996 where Blackpool managed a 3-1 win over the Champions.
Ian Holloway may change his formation to cope with the force Chelsea can throw.
"I spoke about doing something a little bit different today, I've looked at it, I've thought about it over the last week and I've mulled it over but it does depend on the fitness of one of the players which I'm not quite sure about yet.'
Former team mate of Ollie, Chelsea's assistant manager Ray Wilkins has praised Holloway's hard working manner
'That is something you see coming through in his teams and the way they play. First and foremost they work extremely hard and then the quality comes out afterwards.'
Chelsea Team News:
Carlo Ancelotti and Chelsea will once again be without key midfielder Frank Lampard for our visit along with Jose Bosingwa.
Ashley Cole is likely to be back after being rested mid week and it looks like Sturridge will be dropped as free scoring Didier Drogba will likely start.
New player Ramires will also play some part in the game after impressing against West Ham
Player to watch: Didier Drogba
The man is a machine. Give him the ball and he can run, out skill and shoot from literally anywhere.
His free kick ability is something that has help Chelsea score over 100 goals last season.
Blackpool Team News:
Blackpool go into this match with Gary Taylor-Fletcher returning to full fitness and could be available for Sunday's selection.
Also returning with him are Marlon Harewood and Alex John Baptiste who has recovered from a fractured hand.
Cathcart is also back after suffering a virus which kept him out of Blackpool's 2-0 win over Newcastle
Still out of action are youngster Louis Almond and striker Billy Clarke
Player to watch: Elliot Grandin
This midfielder has really impressed since arriving at the club over the summer.
His vision and ball control have seen him run around Wigan's, Fulham's and Newcastle's defence's and has set up some goals along the way.
If we can let him move freely around we could have a chance at a goal or two.
Match Facts & Stats
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The ref has since changed for Sunday's clash. Mark Clattenburg will now officiate after replacing Peter Walton.
Blackpool vs B'Burn Rovers