Chelsea VS Brentford Premier League Football Match Score 26 April
Two teams struggling for form do battle in a West London derby at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night, as Chelsea play host to Brentford in the Premier League.
While the Blues are still searching for their first victory under caretaker boss Frank Lampard, the Bees are also yet to taste victory in the month of April.
Four games, four defeats and just one goal scored. The impact that Chelsea’s owners hoped Lampard’s arrival would have is yet to bear fruit and the West Londoners now have seven Premier League fixtures remaining to salvage something positive from a calamitous 2022-23 campaign.The Blues followed up a 2-1 top-flight home loss to Brighton & Hove Albion on April 15 with a 2-0 quarter-final second-leg defeat to Real Madrid in the Champions League three days later, suffering a 4-0 aggregate loss to the reigning European champions.
Chelsea’s European dreams appear to be over as they currently sit 11th in the Premier League table, a staggering 20 points behind the top four and 11 behind the top seven. Lampard’s immediate priority is to steer the Blues into the top half of the table as they bid to avoid their worst league finish for 27 years (11th in 1995-96).
Only four teams have scored fewer goals than Chelsea (30) in the Premier League this season, three of which are sitting in the relegation zone, and the Blues enter Wednesday’s contest having already drawn a blank against Brentford this season – playing out a goalless draw away from home in October.
Chelsea have managed to win six of their last eight home meetings with the Bees, though, and claiming three much-needed points on Wednesday would provide a huge boost ahead of next week’s daunting task away against league leaders and London rivals Arsenal.Brentford extended their winless league run to six matches when they played out a 1-1 draw at home to Aston Villa last weekend, a game in which they came so close to claiming maximum points.
Top scorer Ivan Toney netted his 19th league goal of the season to open the scoring on the 65-minute mark, and as the Bees looked to be holding on for a slender victory, Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz popped up in the penalty box to fire an 87th-minute equaliser past David Raya, forcing both sides to share the spoils.
Brentford, who have failed to win each of the last four top-flight games in which they have opened the scoring, have slipped down to 10th in the table, and hopes of qualifying for Europe for the first time in their history are fading as they sit seven points adrift of seventh-placed Liverpool who have a game in hand.
Thomas Frank’s men are still on course for their highest-ever Premier League finish, though, and they can consolidate their place in the top half with a win over 11th-placed Chelsea, who sit five points further back as things stand.
Brentford head into Wednesday’s fixture having won only three of their 16 top-flight away games this season, but they can be optimistic of success against Chelsea after securing a memorable 4-1 victory at Stamford Bridge last season.Chelsea will be without Kalidou Koulibaly and Armando Broja due to respective hamstring and knee injuries, although the former could be in a position to return to first-team action at the beginning of next month.
Lampard is able to welcome back Ben Chilwell, Benoit Badiashile, Noni Madueke, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and David Datro Fofana after the quintet were either suspended or ineligible to face Real Madrid; both Chilwell and Badiashile are seemingly the most likely to be recalled as Lampard ponders switching to a four-man backline or sticking with a 3-5-2 setup.
Enzo Fernandez and Mateo Kovacic could continue in centre-midfield, but N’Golo Kante may be given a rest after playing the full 90 minutes against Los Blancos, with Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Denis Zakaria waiting in the wings if needed.
Kai Havertz began as a lone forward against Real Madrid, but the German could receive support in attack on Wednesday, with Joao Felix, Raheem Sterling, Mykhaylo Mudryk, Mason Mount, Christian Pulisic and Hakim Ziyech all pushing to start after beginning as substitutes last time out.
As for Brentford, Pontus Jansson (hamstring), Kristoffer Ajer (calf) and Keane Lewis-Potter (knee) are all sidelined due to injury, while Christian Norgaard is doubtful with a knock.
Frank tends to switch to a three-at-the-back system when facing the so-called bigger clubs in the division, but the absences of both Jansson and Ajer could see the Bees boss stick with a back four of Aaron Hickey, Ethan Pinnock, Ben Mee and Rico Henry on Wednesday.
Should Norgaard fail a late fitness test, Josh Dasilva could start in centre-midfield alongside Mathias Jensen and Vitaly Janelt – the latter of whom scored a brace at Stamford Bridge last season – while Yoane Wissa and Mikkel Damsgaard will push Kevin Schade for a place up front alongside Toney and Bryan Mbeumo.
Chelsea possible starting lineup:
Kepa; James, W. Fofana, Silva, Chilwell; Kante, Fernandez, Kovacic; Mudryk, Havertz, Felix
Brentford possible starting lineup:
Raya; Hickey, Mee, Pinnock, Henry; Jensen, Janelt, Dasilva; Mbeumo, Toney, Damsgaard
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