Predicted Chelsea XI to face Dinamo Zagreb: Zakaria and Broja start as Mendy returns in goal and more…….

Chelsea will be in Champions League action for the final time in 2022 as they host Dinamo Zagreb on Wednesday night.

The Blues have already secured their progression to the round of 16 of the competition, and are certain to finish top of Group E.

Graham Potter’s side did not win either of their first two games in the tournament, but soon sealed back-to-back victories against AC Milan.

Chelsea then beat RB Salzburg 2-1 last week to seal their spot in the knockout stages, and their upcoming clash against Zagreb will be their final bit of European action for the year.

With the Blues not having anything to compete for against their Croatian opponents, there is a chance that some youngsters could make an appearance at Stamford Bridge.

However, Potter has revealed that he will not be looking to use them just ‘for the sake of it’.

In his pre-match press conference, he said: “It’s not a time just to use youngsters for the sake of it. We have to try to pick a team that can win.

“We’ve used a lot of young players, they’ve been impressive. I’ve liked their character and personality.”

Here is how Absolute Chelsea think the Blues could line up against Zagreb on Wednesday night.

Predicted Chelsea XI to face Dinamo Zagreb: Mendy, Azpilicueta, Chalobah, Koulibaly, Loftus-Cheek, Zakaria, Jorginho, Chilwell, Pulisic, Broja, Ziyech

Potter revealed that Kepa Arrizabalaga is unavailable for the match, so Edouard Mendy is expected to come in to replace him in between the sticks.

Kalidou Koulibaly could make a return after a short period of absence away from the side, with Cesar Azpilicueta and Trevoh Chalobah potentially joining him in the back three.

At wing-back, Ruben Loftus-Cheek could operate on the right with Ben Chilwell on the left, especially when Marc Cucurella has struggled in recent games.

In the midfield, Jorginho may well start at the heart of the side and could be joined by Denis Zakaria, who is still waiting for his first minutes in a Chelsea shirt.

Armando Broja is yet to have started in the Champions League but could be given the opportunity to do so against Zagreb.

With injuries still occurring in the squad, Potter may opt to rest the likes of Raheem Sterling and Mason Mount.

Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech could therefore be given the opportunities to impress, especially the latter who has made limited appearances so far this season.

The match will be Chelsea’s last in Europe until early next year, when they will compete in the knockout stages of the illustrious competition.

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