Chelsea vs Watford
Sunday, January 4. Kick-off: 1600
Chelsea have an opportunity to forget their recent Premier League troubles when they host Watford at Stamford Bridge in the third round of the FA Cup on Sunday.
Jose Mourinho's side started the season in rampant style, failing to lose a match until the first week of December, but have won only four of their last eight matches, including a stunning defeat to Tottenham on New Year’s day.
Chelsea’s early campaign form led to suggestions they could complete an unprecedented quadruple this term and, although their prospects have been dented somewhat of late, have an opportunity to begin their FA Cup run on a strong footing.
They are, of course, the overwhelming favourites to beat their Championship opposition even if Mourinho has taken the decision to rejig his side following a difficult Christmas period and with greater tests to come.
Watford, though, have enjoyed a strong season in the second-tier and, despite a recent spell of four successive defeats, are back in the playoff places and seven points behind Bournemouth, the surprise leaders.
Slavisa Jokanovic, a former Chelsea player, returns to Stamford Bridge in charge of the Hornets and will be spared facing Cesc Fabregas and Eden Hazard, with both players left out of the squad for this encounter.
The confirmed teams
Cech; Azpilicueta, Zouma, Cahill, Filipe Luis; Ramires, Mikel; Remy, Oscar, Schurrle; Drogba.
Subs: Courtois, Ivanovic, Ake, Matic, Willian, Salah, Diego Costa.
Bond; Hoban, Cathcart, Angella; Paredes, Munari, Tozser, Forestieri, Pudil; Ighalo, Deeney.