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Chelsea will be eager to start building a winning momentum when they take on Luton Town at Kenilworth Road on Saturday.
One more round of fixtures remains before the turn of the year. The 2023/24 Premier League season resumes this weekend, with Luton Town welcoming Chelsea at Kenilworth Road in the first match of the latest matchday.

Luton Town might have started a turnaround of fortunes in the last ten days. The Hatters have won their most recent two games while giving a good account of themselves in the incomplete match against Bournemouth, which has now become infamous for captain Tom Lockyer getting a cardiac arrest. But the upturn in form has not helped their position on the table, as they remain in the 18th spot.

As for Chelsea, the Blues continue to blow hot and cold under Mauricio Pochettino despite many positive signs of a turnaround. The Blues have lost their last four Premier League away games but won their most recent match, beating Crystal Palace 2-1 at Stamford Bridge. However, the inconsistent run of form means Pochettino’s men are tenth in the standings.

The reverse fixture saw Chelsea cruise to a 3-0 win over Luton Town at Stamford Bridge, with Raheem Sterling scoring a brace and Nicolas Jackson also finding the back of the net. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the encounter ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides.

Rob Edwards does not have any new issues hampering his preparations ahead of his side’s latest fixture. Against Chelsea on Saturday, the Luton Town manager will be bereft of the services of five first-team players.

Tom Lockyer is out indefinitely after suffering a cardiac arrest a few days ago against AFC Bournemouth. Issa Kabore (knock), Reece Burke (hamstring), Dan Potts (thigh), and Marvelous Nakamba (knee) are the other absentees for the home side.

Luton Town will line up in a 3-4-2-1 formation against Chelsea, with Thomas Kaminski featuring in the goal. Gabriel Osho, Teden Mengi, and Amari’i Bell will form the central defensive unit. The trio will look to keep things tight at the back, receiving defensive support from the two wing-backs, Alfie Doughty and Ryan Giles.

Ross Barkley has had a transformational effect at Luton Town after settling down at Kenilworth Road. The former Chelsea midfielder will line up alongside Albert Sambi Lokonga in the middle of the park. Finally, Elijah Adebayo, Carlton Morris, and Andros Townsend should form a fluid offensive trifecta on Saturday.

Unlike his counterpart in the Luton Town dugout, Mauricio Pochettino has greeted positive updates on the team news front ahead of the trip to Kenilworth Road. The Chelsea manager will be without eight first-team players.

Raheem Sterling and Cole Palmer are available again after serving their respective suspensions earlier this week. The duo should return to the starting eleven on Saturday, joining Mykhailo Mudryk and Christopher Nkunku in the final third.

But Robert Sanchez (knee), Trevoh Chalobah (thigh), Wesley Fofana (knee), Reece James (hamstring), Marc Cucurella (ankle), Ben Chilwell (hamstring), Carney Chukwuemeka (knee), and Enzo Fernandez (groin) remain in the treatment room.

Djordje Petrovic will continue to deputise for Sanchez between the sticks. Chelsea will line up in a 4-2-3-1 formation in front of him, with the backline consisting of Malo Gusto, Axel Disasi, Thiago Silva, and Levi Colwill. Finally, Moises Caicedo and Conor Gallagher should pair up in the double pivot in the middle of the park, with the latter providing the forward thrust.

Christopher Nkunku has endured a frustrating debut season with Chelsea, spending much of the first half of the campaign on the sidelines. But he is now looking to make up for lost time after scoring on his Premier League debut last weekend against Wolverhampton Wanderers.

The Frenchman might have the potential to turn things around for the struggling West London club. He now needs a run of games to find his feet at Chelsea and become a pivotal figure for them, as he had done for RB Leipzig. So, the game against a porous Luton Town could not have come at a better time for him.

Prediction
Luton Town 2-2 Chelsea
The odds are stacking in Chelsea’s favour after a decent showing against Crystal Palace earlier this week. But the Blues are on a dreadful run in away games, while Luton Town’s recent displays are a cause for optimism. So, a closely contested encounter is on the cards.

The Hatters will give their visitors a run for their money on Saturday, hoping to produce a repeat of the performance against Newcastle United. In the end, both teams’ defensive vulnerabilities will prove telling, with Luton Town and Chelsea sharing the spoils at the end of a 2-2 draw.

Chelsea travel up the M1 to face Luton Town on Saturday, so we simulated the game using EA FC 24 to try and predict the final score

Chelsea will be looking to build on Wednesday’s Premier League victory when they take on Luton Town on Saturday afternoon.

Goals from Mykhailo Mudryk and Noni Madueke handed Chelsea a 2-1 win over Crystal Palace in their last outing, with the result keeping Chelsea in 10th place and closing the gap on Newcastle in ninth. Next up for the Blues is Luton, where Mauricio Pochettino’s side will be hoping to win back-to-back Premier League games for just the second time so far this season.

Chelsea picked up their first win of the season when they last faced Luton, with a Raheem Sterling brace helping the Blues to a 3-0 win at Stamford Bridge. Luton enter Saturday’s clash on the back of two wins in a row, and three points on Saturday would lift the Hatters out of the relegation zone.

Luton Town vs Chelsea score predicted by EA FC 24 simulation
We used kick-off mode in EA FC 24, but didn’t select a team to control. We then selected the teams and watched the match play out by itself, to give us a score prediction.

We predict that the Hatters could set up in a 3-4-2-1 formation, with their line-up as follows: Kaminski; Mengi, Osho, Bell; Doughty, Sambi Lokonga, Barkley, Giles; Brown, Townsend; Adebayo.

We predict that Chelsea could set up in a 4-2-3-1 formation, with their line-up as follows: Petrovic; Gusto, Disasi, Silva, Colwill; Caicedo, Gallagher; Palmer, Nkunku, Sterling; Jackson.

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