Team news, London record and what has been said - 5 things you need to know ahead of Chelsea v Leeds United

The Whites travel to take on the Blues on Saturday night.

Saturday, 5th December 2020, 11:30 am

Have you missed any of the build-up ahead of tonight's highly-anticipated Premier League showdown between Chelsea and Leeds United at Stamford Bridge?

If so, we've got you covered in our bitesize look ahead to the encounter in the capital. Here are five things you need to know ahead of kick-off:

Chelsea vs Leeds United team news

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Leeds United head coach Marcelo Bielsa. (Getty)

Leeds United have three absentees for the trip to face Chelsea.

Pablo Hernandez, Jamie Shackleton and long-term injury worry Adam Forshaw (hip) are all sidelined.

There was good news pre-match for Marcelo Bielsa, however, who has seen Diego Llorente return to training this week.

The Argentinian though admits he would like the defender to pick up development minutes before any first team involvement unless his hand is forced.

Blues boss Frank Lampard, meanwhile, has a fully-fit senior squad to choose from in London.

Olivier Giroud's impressive four-goal haul in midweek against Sevilla in Champions League action has handed the Chelsea manager a headache over team selection up front.

What Marcelo Bielsa has said...

"For us, every game in the Premier League is very attractive and every opponent renews the difficulties we have to face," Bielsa said.

"In the case of Chelsea, this happens without doubt. With the added point that it’s a traditional encounter, even though it hasn’t happened for a very long time."

What Frank Lampard has said...

"I think it will be a big test for us," Lampard said.

"If you analyse Leeds, they are not an easy team to analyse because of the way that the play but when you just look at the stats there’s lots of shots and they are scoring goals against top teams, pretty much anyone.

"They create a lot so we will have to be at our absolute best in terms of concentration and the togetherness with how we defend.

"We have shown some really good signs and that’s how you get clean sheets from front to back.

"It will be a huge test against Leeds because they are one of the most dangerous teams in the league."

Patrick Bamford returns, Spygate lingers

Patrick Bamford will return this evening to where he spent five years of his career without making a single first team appearance.

The now 27-year-old spent a number of seasons away from Stamford Bridge on loan before finally put pen to paper on a permanent switch to Middlesbrough.

Spygate - the infamous incident between Bielsa and Lampard - has dominated national headlines in the build-up but both managers have been keen to dismiss any chatter of bad blood between the pair..

Lampard, who was in charge of Derby at the time, has moved on to Chelsea and Leeds are now back in the Premier League after 16 years away following promotion last term.

Tonight, a new era begins between the two clubs and managers in the capital.

The key stats...

The last top flight meeting between Leeds United and Chelsea at Stamford Bridge was over 16 years ago. Jesper Gronkjaer scored the only goal of the game for the hosts in May, 2004

Leeds can record three successive Premier League clean sheets for the first time since 2002 on Saturday

Marcelo Bielsa's men have struggled on the road in London in recent times, last winning a fixture in the capital back in December 2017 at Queens Park Rangers. They have failed to find victory in the following 12 attempts since (D2 L10)

Six of Patrick Bamford's seven Premier League goals this term have come away from home