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EPL previews: Leaders Chelsea travel to West Brom

Updated: Tuesday, 11 Feb 2014 12:53 | Comments

Fernando Torres has returned from injury and may start for Chelsea tonight at West Brom
Fernando Torres has returned from injury and may start for Chelsea tonight at West Brom

West Ham United v Norwich City

Sam Allardyce will welcome Joe Cole and Mohamed Diame back into his squad to face Norwich as West Ham look to once again win without the suspended Andy Carroll.

The striker has two matches remaining on his ban, following the unsuccessful appeal against the red card he received in the win at Cardiff, with fellow forwards Carlton Cole and Marco Borriello both pushing for starts.

Cole returns from a groin problem with Diame (knee) also back in contention although Joey O'Brien (shoulder) and Ravel Morrison (groin) are absent.

Norwich winger Robert Snodgrass faces a late fitness test on a groin problem ahead of the trip to West Ham.

Forward Gary Hooper has shrugged off a kick to his foot suffered in the goalless draw against Manchester City, but defender Ryan Bennett (thigh) and midfielder Jonas Gutierrez (calf) remain out, along with centre-back Michael Turner (hamstring).

Midfielder Jonny Howson should return to full training after a back problem next week, while winger Elliott Bennett continues his rehabilitation from a serious knee injury.

West Ham United squad: Adrian, Jaaskelainen, Demel, Tomkins, McCartney, Collins, Johnson, Reid, Armero, Noble, Nocerino, Diame, Taylor, Nolan, J Cole, Downing, Jarvis, Borriello, Vaz Te, C Cole.
Norwich City squad: Ruddy, Olsson, Yobo, Bassong, Martin, Pilkington, Fer, Tettey, Johnson, Redmond, Van Wolfswinkel, Bunn, Elmander, Whittaker, Hooper, Garrido, Hoolahan, Murphy, Becchio.

Cardiff City v Aston Villa

Cardiff could be without Craig Bellamy for their Premier League fixture against Aston Villa after the striker was charged with violent conduct by the Football Association.

Should Bellamy choose not to contest the charge, over an incident with Swansea midfielder Jonathan de Guzman, a three-match ban will begin against the Villans.

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer hopes to have Craig Noone and Kevin Theophile-Catherine available, while Jordon Mutch could come into starting XI with defender Juan Cala making his debut.

On-loan Ryan Bertrand is a doubt for Aston Villa ahead of their clash at Cardiff.

The defender, signed from Chelsea in mid-January until the end of the season, damaged ribs after colliding with a post during Saturday's 2-0 defeat to West Ham.

Manager Paul Lambert could again be without centre-back Ron Vlaar for the second successive match due to a hamstring problem.

Cardiff City squad: Marshall, Taylor, Caulker, Turner, Whittingham, Medel, Jones, Campbell, Kim, Smith, Eikrem, Noone, Gunnarsson, Mutch, Cowie, McNaughton, Theophile-Catherine, Daehli, Lewis, Berget, Fabio, Zaha, Bellamy, Cala.

Aston Villa squad: Guzan, Steer, Clark, Baker, Luna, Bertrand, Vlaar, Bennett, Lowton, Bacuna, El Ahmadi, Albrighton, Westwood, Delph, Sylla, Holt, Gardner, Tonev, Helenius, Weimann, Agbonlahor, Benteke, Bowery.

Hull City v Southampton

Hull will be without full-back Liam Rosenior for Tuesday's Barclays Premier League visit of Southampton.

Rosenior was forced off with a thigh problem at half-time in the weekend win over Sunderland and will need to rest for at least a week.

Sone Aluko made his first substitute appearance since October at the Stadium of Light and should once again make the bench, but James Chester (hamstring) and Allan McGregor (suspended) are out.

Southampton will again be without defender Dejan Lovren and forward Gaston Ramirez at Hull as the pair continue to recover from their respective ankle injuries.

Striker Rickie Lambert is pressing to retain his place in the side after scoring in the 2-2 draw with Stoke on his return from a hamstring injury.

Midfielder Victor Wanyama is another in contention following his recovery from a hairline fracture in his leg.

Hull City squad: Harper, Jakupovic, McShane, Davies, Bruce, Huddlestone, Elmohamady, Meyler, Brady, Long, Jelavic, Quinn, Livermore, Boyd, Figueroa, Fryatt, Koren, Sagbo, Aluko.
Southampton squad: Boruc, Shaw, Fonte, Clyne, Yoshida, Davis, Lallana, Cork, Schneiderlin, Rodriguez, Lambert, Davis, Do Prado, Isgrove, Hooiveld, Ward-Prowse, Wanyama, Chambers.

West Bromwich Albion v Chelsea

Defender Billy Jones is West Brom head coach Pepe Mel's latest injury concern ahead their Barclays Premier League match with leaders Chelsea at The Hawthorns.

Jones is a doubt with a knee problem and will undergo a late fitness test, and if ruled out will join Nicolas Anelka, Stephane Sessegnon and Jonas Olsson on the sidelines.

After scoring on his debut in Saturday's 3-1 loss at Crystal Palace after coming on as a half-time substitute, Mel may play on-loan Thievy Bifouma from the start.

Chelsea will once again be without captain John Terry for their trip to West Brom.

The defender missed Saturday's win over Newcastle as a precaution and Blues' manager Jose Mourinho will again leave Terry out of the firing line at the Hawthorns.

The Chelsea skipper is likely to return for Saturday's FA Cup fifth-round clash with Manchester City but the league leaders will have Fernando Torres back from a knee injury in time to be in contention against the Baggies.

West Brom squad: Foster, Myhill, Reid, Popov, Ridgewell, Lugano, McAuley, Dawson, Jones, Yacob, Morrison, Sinclair, Brunt, Dorrans, Amalfitano, Mulumbu, Gera, Anichebe, Vydra, Berahino, Bifouma.
Chelsea squad: Cech, Schwarzer, Ivanovic, Luiz, Chaill, Cole, Azpilicueta, Kalas, Ramires, Lampard, Mikel, Matic, Oscar, Schurrle, Salah, Hazard, Ba, Willian, Eto'o, Torres.

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