Journalist Simon Phillips believes that Chelsea manager Graham Potter could bring trouble on himself if he continues to start Cesar Azpilicueta over Wesley Fofana.

The recently-appointed head coach decided to pick the Spanish defender ahead of the summer recruit for his first game in charge of the Blues against Red Bull Salzburg last week. Summer arrivals Fofana and Kalidou Koulibaly were kept on the bench as Thiago Silva and Marc Cucurella, brought into a central role from wing-back, also got the nod as part of a back three.

However, Phillips believes that many Chelsea supporters won’t wish to see the long-serving Spaniard consistently starting over younger options like Fofana going forward.

Phillips’ warning to Potter

He told GIVEMESPORT: “I think purely because of the way Azpilicueta played in the last match, if he starts him over Fofana again, there’s going to be outrage.

“So I think it was purely a first game kind of thing where he went for experience. I think we will see Fofana come back in and other players as well.”

Fofana to be restored soon

You certainly would expect Fofana to be restored to the starting XI soon, having been bought for £70m from Leicester City in the recent transfer window.

The 21-year-old was thrust into the team under Thomas Tuchel against both West Ham and the subsequent Champions League fixture against Dinamo Zagreb in the first week of September. However, the French starlet didn’t cover himself in glory as he allowed Mislav Orsic through to score what proved to be the winner in Croatia. 

That result ultimately cost Tuchel his job, but considering that Azpilicueta is 33 and Potter must ready his troops for Wilfried Zaha and company – with Crystal Palace away the next test following the international break – the pace and exuberance of Fofana may be needed to thwart the dynamic Eagles.