RAHEEM STERLING and Kalidou Koulibaly could make their debuts as Chelsea begin their Premier League campaign against Everton.
Thomas Tuchel heads to Merseyside in Saturday night’s opener hoping to start the season with a win.
To do so, Chelsea must end a five-game winless streak at Goodison Park – a record dating back to 2017.
Sterling could help inspire his new team to victory, with the England star likely to start alongside Mason Mount and Kai Havertz in attack.
Though Sterling has been linked to several stars this summer, he is just one of three signings alongside Koulibaly and Carney Chukwuemeka.
The former Napoli defender is set to make his debut but there will be a sense of familiarity in the Chelsea line-up as Tuchel’s only real dilemma is in midfield.
Mateo Kovacic performed well last season and could start alongside N’Golo Kante, which would mean Jorginho would drop to the bench alongside new midfielder Chukwuemeka.
Tuchel also has options in defence, but is likely to choose the reliable Thiago Silva and captain Cesar Azpilicueta, who has declined a move to Barcelona and has signed a two-year deal instead.
Other good news is that Ben Chilwell is set to return to the side for his first Premier League appearance since beating Leicester 3-0 in late November.
The left-back tore his cruciate ligament against Juventus and has since been on the mend after undergoing surgery just before the turn of the year.
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Tuchel will be happy to have him back with the distance Chilwell and Reece James have provided for his style.
James is one of the first names on the team list, as are Edouard Mendy and Mount, although Tuchel could try to experiment in attack, playing Sterling as a false nine, with Christian Pulisic possibly starting on the left wing.
Trevoh Chalobah could also be selected at centre-back but Levi Colwill is expected to miss as he completes a move to Brighton as part of the deal that sees Marc Cucurella join the Blues.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/football/premier-league/5935129/chelsea-line-up-everton-sterling-koulibaly/ How Chelsea could face Everton in the Premier League opener with Raheem Sterling and Koulibaly making debuts