Chelsea vs Crystal Palace

Crystal Palace given major boost ahead of Chelsea match

Wilfried Zaha could play on Saturday

Willian's vast recent form has not escaped Chelsea coach Antonio Conte, who lauded the Brazilian as "fantastic" after he scored and starred in Saturday's 2-1 win over Crystal Palace.

Chelsea have lost their last two league games against Crystal Palace - the last side to beat them on three consecutive occasions were Liverpool, who recorded four successive top-flight wins against the Blues between 2010 and 2012.

Chelsea have turned to Olivier Giroud to shake off their slump in front of goal as Antonio Conte's men host Crystal Palace on Saturday. Countering this, Palace are without a win in six matches and have lost their last three games with the squad shorn of key players.

Davide Zappacosta and Gary Cahill come in for Victor Moses and Antonio Rudiger, with the Germany global getting a full rest ahead of Barcelona on Wednesday.

After successive starts against Spurs and United, a third could follow at Chelsea, and Hodgson hopes we are witnessing the start of a promising Premier League career.

Willian broke the deadlock on 25 minutes at Stamford Bridge, firing a low shot beyond Wayne Hennessey to net his fifth goal in his last five Chelsea appearances, the best form of his Blues career. Losing the very consistency that won them the league in Conte's debut season, the West London club find themselves in a brutal scrap for one of the Champions League spots alongside North London clubs, Tottenham and Arsenal.

"We have to show great resilience", Conte continued.

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The hosts now sit in the relegation zone but a victory on Saturday could propel them out of the drop zone and give them a little bit more hope of stay up.

"All teams rely upon their decisive players, so when you have a player out for any length of time there's always a risk you'll push for him to come back earlier than he should".

Conte also confirmed that the game against Palace would certainly come too soon for long-term absentee David Luiz and Ross Barkley.

Townsend was my key man when Palace took on Manchester United and he was clearly one of the most risky players for Crystal Palace with his experience and pace into the final third.

Hazard, seeking the goal to take him level with Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink in Chelsea's all-time scorers list, also had one ruled out when rightly flagged for offside after converting from a close-range rebound.

Wilfried Zaha (knee) and Mamadou Sakho (calf) will both undergo late fitness tests but Joel Ward, Scott Dann, Yohan Cabaye, Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Jason Puncheon, Bakary Sako, Connor Wickham and Julian Speroni are all out.

"This season perhaps hasn't been quite as good as last season but the team is still doing well", he said.

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