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Two changes for Palace as Hodgson rejigs defence and midfield v Chelsea

7 July 2020

Roy Hodgson has made two changes to the Crystal Palace lineup which kicked-off against Leicester City for his side's clash with Chelsea this evening.

The Palace manager has made his switches down the centre of Palace's XI, with Scott Dann replacing Mamadou Sakho in defence and Cheikhou Kouyate taking Jairo Riedewald's place in midfield.

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Other than this, Hodgson has left his squad the same, with promising Development talents Sam Woods, Brandon Pierrick and Saturday's debutant, Tyrick Mitchell, each retaining their berth on the bench.

Against an in-form and talented Chelsea midfield including Christian Pulisic and Willian, Hodgson's experienced cluster of Kouyate, Luka Milivojevic and James McArthur could prove crucial from 18:00 tonight, with the manager's recently trusted attacking trident of Jordan Ayew, Wilfried Zaha and Christian Benteke selected up-front.

After Hodgson said it was "a bit early" for the recovering Martin Kelly to make a competitive return, the defender remains absent from Palace's squad.

Chelsea have made one change to the starting XI which overcame Watford 3-0 at the weekend, with Billy Gilmour replacing the injured N'Golo Kante in midfield.

Former Eagle loanee Michy Batshuayi takes Gilmour's place on the bench.

Palace: Guaita, Van Aanholt, Cahill, Dann, Ward, McArthur, Milivojevic, Kouyate, Zaha, Ayew, Benteke.

Subs: Hennessey, Sakho, Woods, Mitchell, Riedewald, McCarthy, Meyer, Townsend, Pierrick.

Chelsea: Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Zouma, Christensen, James, Mount, Gilmour, Barkley, Pulisic, Giroud, Willian.

Subs: Caballero, Rudiger, Alonso, Jorginho, Pedro, Hudson-Odoi, Loftus-Cheek, Abraham, Batshuayi.

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