Christensen out, James a sub – expected Chelsea line-up against Liverpool

Andreas Christensen will reportedly miss Chelsea’s Carabao Cup final against Liverpool later today.

Reports suggest that the defender is nursing an Achilles problem so will sit out the game at Wembley.

It therefore seems likely that Cesar Azpilicueta will start on the right of a back three, with Thiago Silva in the middle and Antonio Rudiger on the left.

Reece James is back in the squad and has looked “brilliant” in training according to boss Thomas Tuchel, who suggested at his pre-match press conference that he might start with the England defender, who has been out since the end of December because of a hamstring injury.

“He looked brilliant in the last two training sessions,” Tuchel said.

“Let’s wait another session and then let’s see if I’m crazy enough to just put him on the pitch or if the reasonable side of me wins in the end and we go step by step.

“It would be a huge step (to start with James), but honestly yesterday and today he looked so strong, so confident and so involved in training that you are tempted to do it.

“Let’s see. We have a little bit of time. The most important thing is that he’s back and that he feels confident.”

James might well play some part in the game, but it seems likely that he will start on the bench, with Callum Hudson-Odoi chosen at right wing-back.

And with Kai Havertz having impressed up front, Romelu Lukaku looks likely to be on the bench again.

Predicted Chelsea line-up: Mendy, Azpilicueta, Silva, Rudiger; Hudson-Odoi, Jorginho, Kante, Alonso; Mount, Ziyech, Havertz.