Chelsea will hand Tammy Abraham a late fitness test to see if he can feature against former club Aston Villa tonight.

Abraham suffered a hip injury against Valencia in the Champions League last week and missed their defeat to West Ham at the weekend.

But Frank Lampard is hopeful the in-form striker will be fit to start against the club where he previously excelled on loan as he looks to fire the Blues back to winning ways.

With a hectic run of festive fixtures, Lampard has some big decisions to make as he manages his squad.

But after being beaten in their last two Premier League games and losing ground on the leaders, he is unlikely to make too many bold decisions as he looks to get back on track with a vital win.

Experienced full-backs Cesar Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso are expected to come back in for Reece James and Emerson Palmieri on the right and left flanks respectively.

Chelsea star Tammy Abraham could be back for Aston Villa

N’Golo Kante could also replace Mason Mount in midfield, with Willian replacing Pedro, who struggled on his recall to the side at the weekend.

If Abraham is unfit to feature, then Michy Batshuayi is in pole position to start after Olivier Giroud’s surprise recall at the weekend.

Lampard could make several changes for the visit of Aston Villa

Speaking ahead of the game, Lampard praised the impact Abraham’s loan at Villa Park during their successful promotion charge last season had on his development.

Lampard said: “It was an important loan for him to go to a big club where the responsibility is strong on you as the main man up front to score goals.

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“He obviously reacted well to that and scored a lot. He worked on his game. I saw that.

“He would have been all the better for working closely with Dean and John in that role there. It gave him confidence and it felt the right time for him to come back after that.

“Now he’s had a few loans, he’s scored goals, he’s proved it. It was very natural for the progression from my point of view for him to come back.”

Chelsea expected line-up: Kepa, Azpilicueta, Zouma, Tomori, Alonso, Jorginho, Kovacic, Kante, Willian, Pulisic, Abraham

https://www.dailystar.co.uk/sport/football/chelsea-expected-lineup-vs-aston-21023402