Chelsea are set to make the trip to England’s south coast this weekend with sights set on keeping alive an impressive recent unbeaten streak.
The Blues, all told, have not tasted defeat since all the way back on September 6th, notching six wins and three draws from nine across all competitions.
They have, in turn, climbed to a spot in joint-4th in the Premier League table, whilst booking a spot in the knockout rounds in the Champions League.
Next up for the capital giants? A visit to Amex Stadium, to take on Brighton & Hove Albion.
Saturday’s clash, of course, marks a special one for head coach Graham Potter, who is set to return to Brighton for the first time since bringing a close to his stellar chapter on the Seagulls’ bench.
Who, though, will be at the disposal of Chelsea’s new boss? And, more significantly, who will not?
Predicted Chelsea line-up vs Brighton
Likely to miss the weekend’s action at the Amex is Chelsea summer addition Kalidou Koulibaly.
The Senegalese has not featured in either of the Pensioners’ last two fixtures over the course of the last week, owing to a knee issue suffered versus Brentford.
He has since managed a return to first-team training, but it remains to be seen whether Graham Potter is willing to risk Koulibaly on Saturday afternoon.
Another member of the Chelsea summer influx to have been struck down by injury, Wesley Fofana remains sidelined long-term.
The Frenchman set pulses racing after picking up a fresh knee issue against AC Milan in the Champions League earlier this month.
And though it has since been confirmed that the problem is not as serious as first feared, he looks unlikely to take to the pitch in a competitive fashion before the Qatar World Cup.
Joining Fofana on the treatment table in west London is compatriot N’Golo Kante.
The midfield dynamo has endured a nightmare campaign to date, unable to secure full fitness whilst dealing with a series of thigh concerns.
Kante, as a result, went under the knife in October, in a bid to put his injury troubles behind him.
Nevertheless, he is not expected to line out for Chelsea again until early in the new year.
Another of the guaranteed Blues absentees on the south coast this weekend comes in the form of star defender Reece James.
The Englishman saw his World Cup dreams shattered after picking up a knee injury during a Champions League showdown with AC Milan, remaining out of action ever since.
And though murmurs have spread that James could yet return to fitness in time to board the plane to Qatar, Saturday’s action, for obvious reasons, will come too soon.
Last up on Chelsea’s lest of fitness concerns ahead of the latest round of Premier League action is Mateo Kovacic.
Midfielder Kovacic was afforded a start in midweek, as the capital giants secured an important three points in Austria, at the expense of RB Salzburg.
Hauled off prematurely owing to minor ‘tightness’ in his calf, though, it now remains to be seen whether the Croatian international is deemed fit enough to feature from the off against Brighton.