Chelsea don’t have any new injury concerns and could be unchanged from the side that beat West Ham 2-1 in the opener. John Obi Mikel remains the only absentee as he didn’t yet return from the Olympics.
Watford have completed the signings of Younes Kaboul and Roberto Pereyra but they will not be available to face Chelsea. Brice Dja Djedje and Isaac Success remain sidelined, while Ben Watson is suspended after being sent off 12 minutes after coming on at Southampton.
Watford boss Walter Mazzari will likely use a 3-5-2 formation which is rarely used in the Premier League but had a reemergence in popularity in Italy in recent years. Amrabat and Holebas will likely form a five-man back line when not in possession, adding themselves to the midfield when Watford will have the ball. As usual, Troy Deeney and Odion Ighalo will lead the charge but Mazzari has yet to find the recipe that made the duo play so well in 2015-16.
Watford (3-5-2): Gomes – Catchcart, Prodl, Britos – Amrabat, Capoue, Behrami, Guedioura, Holebas – Deeney, Ighalo. Manager Walter Mazzari.
It seems Antonio Conte already has a preferred lineup as he will likely use the same eleven that ran out against West Ham in the opener. Terry is the main defender and is paired with Cahill, which worked well so far because N’Golo Kante is relieveing the pressure on the back line. Matic will join him in defensive midfield and you can think of this formation as 4-1-4-1 or 4-2-3-1 depending on where you put Matic. In either case, Hazard, Oscar and Willian will do the creative stuff as Fabregas will be left out again.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Courtois – Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta – Kante, Matic – Willian, Oscar, Hazard – Diego Costa. Manager Antonio Conte.
If all Antonio Conte will ever do with Chelsea is bring Eden Hazard back into form, he’s done enough. And Hazard looks like his 2014-15 self as Conte adapted the playing style to help the Belgian international do his thing. We’ve only seen one game so far, but with Hazard back in form and Kante providing midfield stability and a shield for the defensive line, Chelsea are looking really good.
The bookmakers have adapted to that and now Chelsea are priced at 3/5 (1.60) to win this match. See all odds and betting markets for Watford vs Chelsea on OddsNavigator.com.