Ross Barkley in Chelsea squad to face Brighton - Antonio Conte

Victor Moses

Only Manchester City have taken more points on the road this season than Chelsea, who also boast the joint-best away defensive record.

The champions dropped to fourth place after last weekend's round of fixtures and could slip to fifth if they lose at Brighton and Tottenham Hotspur beat Southampton the following day.

The next visitors to the Amex on Saturday lunchtime are a Chelsea side decimated by suspension following the red cards shown to Pedro and Alvaro Morata during Wednesday night's chaotic FA Cup tie with Norwich.

Spain striker Morata has struggled since his impressive start to life at Stamford Bridge and is without a goal in six games, while winger Pedro has scored four times in the league. Five successive draws, and even though they won via penalties against Norwich City, the performance was far from satisfactory. "Instead we conceded with 10 seconds to go", he said. We are always conscious about what we say, we have a competitive squad, but we have found it hard to get the goals we need. We have to try to recover very well.

"If we are able to do that then we will".

Responsibility for leading the attack at Brighton is likely to fall on Eden Hazard, with Batshuayi providing a central striking option from the bench.


Willian was unfortunate to be carded for an alleged dive during extra time, but Conte has admitted that Pedro was guilty of trying to deceive the officials.

Chelsea need to rediscover their scoring touch, and will need to perform well to break down a very well organised and well-disciplined Brighton team. There is more than enough talent in this outfit to ensure a win so if they perform to their ability they should win.

At a press conference, the 48-year-old said: "I must be honest I watched the three situations".

"But these are the challenges you look forward to". This side knows that they are in a relegation battle this season and getting home points is essential in ensuring that the side is safe when this season comes to an end.

"There is no-one in the changing room who wouldn't want to play, it's our next opportunity to pick up points".

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