Pulisic out, Gilmour plays – expected Chelsea line-up against Fulham

Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel will surely not be able to resist resting players in today’s west London derby against Fulham.

With the second leg of the Champions League semi-final against Real Madrid looming, the depth of Chelsea’s squad means Tuchel can make changes and still feel confident of maximum points against a struggling Fulham side.

Mateo Kovacic and Antonio Rudiger are out injured, with the latter’s absence meaning Kurt Zouma is pretty sure of a starting place.

The obvious likely change is in midfield, where Billy Gilmour might well be given a chance to show what he can do.

N’Golo Kante’s fitness has been carefully managed in light of his injury problems, and as the Frenchman will be needed against Real it seems likely that he will sit this one out.

Resting Thiago Silva also seems sensible and there might be an outing for Callum Hudson-Odoi on the right if Cesar Azpilicueta reverts to the role of right-sided centre-back.

Tuchel may also opt to keep the likes of Ben Chilwell and Christian Pulisic fresh, with Marcos Alonso and Hakim Ziyech therefore in line for starting places.

It will be interesting to see what happens up front. With Timo Werner struggling in front of goal and Olivier Giroud waiting in the wings, perhaps the Frenchman will come in against a Fulham team who have been decent at the back during the second half of the season.

Predicted Chelsea line-up: Mendy, Azpilicueta, Christensen, Zouma, Hudson-Odoi, Jorginho, Gilmour, Mount, Alonso, Ziyech, Giroud.