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RAHEEM STERLING and Kalidou Koulibaly could make their debuts as Chelsea begin their Premier League campaign against Everton.

Thomas Tuchel takes his side to Merseyside in Saturday's evening kick-off hoping to start the season with a win.

4Chelsea could hand debuts to Kalidou Koulibaly and Raheem Sterling 4Sterling is set to make his Chelsea debut at EvertonCredit: Getty 4Koulibaly could get his first taste of Premier League football at Goodison ParkCredit: Getty

To do so Chelsea will have to end a run of five games without a win at Goodison Park - a record that stretches back to 2017.

Sterling could help inspire his new team to victory with the England star likely to start in attack alongside Mason Mount and Kai Havertz.

Despite being linked with several stars this summer Sterling is only one of three signings along with Koulibaly and Carney Chukwuemeka.

The former Napoli defender is set to make his debut but there will be a familiar feel amongst the Chelsea line-up with Tuchel's only real dilemma in midfield.

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Mateo Kovacic performed well last season and could start alongside N'Golo Kante, which would mean Jorginho dropping to the bench next to new midfielder Chukwuemeka.

Tuchel also has options in defence but will likely pick the dependable Thiago Silva and captain Cesar Azpilicueta, who has snubbed a move to Barcelona and instead signed a two-year deal.

In other good news Ben Chilwell is set to return to the side for his first Premier League appearance since playing in a 3-0 win over Leicester in late November.

The left wing-back tore his ACL against Juventus and has been on the road to recovery ever since, undergoing surgery just before the new year.

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Tuchel will be delighted to have him back with the width provided by Chilwell and Reece James key to his style.

James is one of the first names on the team sheet as are Edouard Mendy and Mount, although Tuchel could look to experiment in attack by playing Sterling as a false nine with Christian Pulisic possibly starting on the left wing.

Trevoh Chalobah could also be selected in central defence but Levi Colwill looks set to miss out as he closes on a move to Brighton as part of the deal which will see Marc Cucurella join the Blues.

News Source: the-sun.com

Tags: premier league raheem sterling is set to make kalidou koulibaly in premier league against everton koulibaly could thomas tuchel the left wing the left wing chelsea could koulibaly at goodison defence but sterling

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Cristiano Ronaldo labelled ‘total genius’ by Fifa for winning controversial penalty in Portugal’s World Cup 2022 opener

Fifa have labelled Cristiano Ronaldo a "total genius" for the "smart" way he won a controversial penalty in Portugal's World Cup opener.

Ghana boss Otto Addo was outraged by the soft spot-kick that Ronaldo converted to become the first player to score at five World Cups.

3Ronaldo certainly had no qualms over celebrating his hotly-debated spot-kickCredit: AP

Legend Ron tumbled all too easily under the challenge of Mohammed Salisu but Fifa claim it was a perfect example of strikers getting smarter" in their thinking and movement.

The historic goal from the Manchester United discard sparked a 3-2 victory.

And Sunday Oliseh, from Fifa technical study group (TSG), believes Ronaldo, 37, should be "complimented" for it.

Oliseh told a briefing in Doha: "Maybe the strikers are getting smarter?

3Cristiano Ronaldo slumped to the floor under the challenge from Mohammed Salisu to persuade referee Ismail Elfath to give a penaltyCredit: AP 3Ronaldo tucked home the penalty to become the first player ever to score at five World Cups, putting Portugal on the way to a 3-2 win vs GhanaCredit: Alamy

"The Ronaldo penalty, people can say what they want about him, but the smartness to wait for that second, to touch the ball, continue his leg and then get the contact. That is total genius.

"Let's give strikers the compliment for getting smarter. 

"VAR is also a major reason why this (more penalties being awarded) is happening. Referees can look at it three or four times."

Ronaldo flew to the floor out of all proportion to the faint touch he seemed to get from Southampton defender Salisu.

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And Addo said: "I think the referee didn't make the right decision... He gave a penalty which was not a penalty - everyone saw that.

"Why? Because it's Ronaldo or something?

"If someone scores a goal, congratulations. Congratulations... With special gifts from the referees.

"The referee was not in our favour."

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Former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger leads TSG, which examines each match for trends and stats.

Nine penalties were awarded in the first 20 games.

That suggests the previous record of 24 spot-kicks in World Cup group games - set in Russia four years ago - could be beaten.

Topics
  • Fifa
  • Football
  • World Cup 2022
  • Manchester United
  • Portugal
  • Cristiano Ronaldo
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