Chelsea’s roster is going through some serious changes this summer with big names leaving the club and being replaced. The potential Chelsea starting XI 2022-23 lineup is full of fresh faces and new names.
First, let’s look at the potential lineup and then explain the additions. Spoiler alert to fellow Americans: Christian Pulisic doesn’t make it into this potential lineup. The formation is manager Thomas Tuchel’s preferred 3-4-2-1 look.
Potential Chelsea Starting XI 2022-23
With Romelu Lukaku heading back to Inter Milan it seems as of now that Timo Werner will have the starting gig up top. The two supporting forwards in this potential lineup are Chelsea’s player of the year last season, Mason Mount, and new signing from Manchester City Raheem Sterling. It’s reported that the transfer fee for Sterling was just over $60 million.
— Chelsea FC (@ChelseaFC) July 13, 2022
Pulisic could have a difficult time finding starts for Chelsea with the incoming transfer of Sterling. There have been rumors swirling around about if the American forward will find a new club this summer.
The Chelsea midfield is unchanged from last season. If everyone is healthy then N’golo Kanté and Mateo Kovačić should get the start, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see Jorginho or Ruben Loftus-Cheek make appearances too. Reece James and a now-healthy Ben Chilwell will add support from the wingback positions.
The defense is where the lineup should see the most changes. The Blues’ defense was gutted in the transfer market with Antonio Rüdiger and Andreas Christensen leaving for LaLiga. César Azpilicueta and left back Marcos Alonso are also expected to leave.
Tuchel appears to be standing in the way of Azpilicueta's wishes to move to Barcelona. Perhaps the Spaniard will be staying at Stamford Bridge after all.
“We have a Spanish international player, captain but Barcelona does not see it on that level - so I’m not sure if I want to give Azpi what he wants”. #FCB pic.twitter.com/I3dQTX0KCB
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 22, 2022
Thiago Silva will remain in the back line but will likely be joined by new faces. For now Trevor Chalobah has a starting role, however the Blues are expected to sign another center back. Former Blue Nathan Aké looked close to a reunion, but reports say Manchester City has pulled the plug on the deal.
Nathan Ake staying at Manchester City. Chelsea showed a strong interest but #MCFC would only sell if valuation met. That hasn’t happened & mutual decision taken for 27yo Dutch defender to remain & play key part in Pep Guardiola plans @TheAthleticUK #CFC https://t.co/Ehz9VbBNpg— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) July 15, 2022
Chelsea has also been linked with PSG defender Presnel Kimpembe and Sevilla's Jules Koundé. Barcelona is also in the race for Koundé. Will the Catalan club hijack the Koundé deal?
One new face is confirmed for Chelsea’s backline. The latest Chelsea signing is long-time Napoli center back Kalidou Koulibaly. The 31-year-old Senegalese defender had been with Napoli since 2014.
Kalidou Koulibaly can be considered new Chelsea player. It's all signed and completed. ✅ #CFC▫️ Contract signed, four year deal + option for further season.
▫️ Documents completed between Napoli and Chelsea for €40m.
▫️ Medical successfully completed in London, now LA. pic.twitter.com/nuWi51Svwd
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 15, 2022
Kalidou Koulibaly to Chelsea, here we go! Full agreement in place for €40m fee add-ons completed, bid accepted. Napoli are checking the documents then it will be official. #CFCKoulibaly will sign long-term deal for €10m net salary per season. First centre back, signed. pic.twitter.com/Flr0XSN7wu
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) July 13, 2022
— Adam Newson (@AdamNewson) July 15, 2022
Just for fun I have included another potential Chelsea starting XI if all the transfer rumors came true. This lineup includes the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Serge Gnabry, who have been linked to Chelsea this summer but in all likelihood won't be joining the Blues.
Potential Chelsea Starting XI 2022-23 (If More Rumors Were True)