Jose Mourinho will be going into Sunday’s game with Manchester City hoping it will be events on the pitch attracting the headlines.
Chelsea’s preparation for the showdown between the two title favourites has been overshadowed by Mourinho’s row with his medical staff.
He will also have to deal with the loss of goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois after his sending off against Swansea.
There is also a doubt over midfielder Oscar and whether he will make the starting line-up after picking up a ‘little injury’ in training.
Manchester City put in the most impressive display of all the title contenders after the first round of Premier League matches, so how will Mourinho stifle the threat of David Silva, Sergio Aguero, pacy winger Raheem Sterling and the others.
As if letting Petr Cech move to a title rival didn’t look bad enough (despite his shaky start to life in north London), then losing your first choice goalkeeper to a red card doesn’t make it any better.
Asmir Begovic, however, is a more than capable replacement and has established himself as one of the best goalies in the league over the past decade.
Act surprised if you see one of these four dropped at any point during the season.
Together they formed the tightest defence in the league last season, but will have to do well to keep out the likes of Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling.
This is probably the area where the game will be won and lost and that is why Mourinho will be more inclined to pick Ramires ahead of the doubtful Oscar.
Ramires adds more energy, running and industry than his compatriot and is consequently often picked for the big games against other members of the top four, especially when away from home.
Nemanja Matic, meanwhile, will be tasked with the unenviable mission of keeping Silva and Yaya Toure quiet something West Brom couldn’t manage, much to their peril.
Diego Costa will lead the line as usual with Eden Hazard and Willian providing the creative spark either side of him. Despite City’s defence looking so solid on Monday night against the Baggies, the trio will be looking at the uneasy performances of Vincent Kompany and others from last season for encouragement.
The game could be decided on a moment of brilliance and, Hazard particularly, will be who Chelsea will look to for that, one hopes he doesn’t provoke another confrontation between the medical team and the coach.