Chelsea vs Leicester preview: The Premier League's last two champions meet at Stamford Bridge

Two Italian coaches hope for three points as both clubs aim to propel up the league table.

Chelsea vs Leicester preview: The Premier League's last two champions meet at Stamford Bridge
Source: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images

Two Italian coaches, Antonio Conte and Claudio Ranieri see their teams square off at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon as both Chelsea and Leicester City hope to begin a surge toward the top four of the Premier League.

The Premier League's last two champions currently sit in 7th (Chelsea) and 12th (Leicester) but the season is still early and after a handful of shaky results recently, three points will be crucial for both teams.

Team News

Chelsea: The Blues were comfortable 2-0 winners over Hull City before the international break and are set to welcome back captain John Terry back to the team after the skipper struggled with an ankle injury. While Terry is set to return, Chelsea may have to wait another week for Kurt Zouma to complete his comeback from his devastating knee injury.

Brazilian winger Willian will miss Saturday's game due to the sad news of his mother passing away over the international break.

Projected XI: Courtois; Cahill, Terry, Luiz; Azpilicueta, Kante, Oscar, Alonso; Hazard, Diego Costa, Moses.

Leicester City: Leicester haven't recaptured the magic of last season yet as they dwell in 12th place and played to a 0-0 draw with Southampton in their last outing.

Danny Drinkwater looks to set to miss out with a groin injury while Shinji Okazaki is also doubtful with an ankle problem. Nampalys Mendy is another loss for Leicester's midfield as he's set to be ruled out with an ankle injury.

Projected XI: Schmeichel; Fuchs, Huth, Morgan, Simpson; Mahrez, King, Amartey, Albrighton; Slimani, Vardy.

What to Watch For

Diego Costa has six goals in seven games so far but is also sitting on four yellow cards, meaning one more would see him serve a one-game suspension. Costa's been excellent for the Blues this season but will need to be careful on Saturday, while continuing to terrorise defences.

Slimani has performed well since his arrival from Sporting Lisbon in the summer / Getty Images/ Michael Regan
Slimani has performed well since his arrival from Sporting Lisbon in the summer / Getty Images/ Michael Regan

Islam Slimani and Jamie Vardy both have just two goals in seven games this season but their partnership up front looks to be working as their styles complement each other perfectly. With Chelsea still struggling at the back, Leicester's two strikers may be in for a big day.

Chelsea's decision to switch to a back three worked in their victory over Hull and Antonio Conte looks set to use that formation against Leicester. The formation has often been criticised in England but Conte may just be able to get it to work with this Chelsea side.

N'Golo Kante will face his former club for the first time since leaving Leicester for the Blues over the summer. The Frenchman was instrumental in Leicester's cinderella story last season and has impressed in his short time at Chelsea. Saturday should be full of emotion for Kante as he reunites with former teammates.