Torres benched; Ba, Lampard start: Chelsea v Southampton

LONDON (Sporting Alert) – Demba Ba was handed the starting role over Fernando Torres to lead Chelsea in their English Premier League clash with Southampton at Stamford Bridge this evening.

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John Terry is in the team, but only starts on the bench again, as midfielder Frank Lampard will lead the team out.

Starting in midfield also are Ramires, Oscar, Juan Mata and Eden Hazard, as Rafa Benitez look for his team to cut the gap in the league standings to 11 points.

Elsewhere, Gary Cahill returns with Branislav Ivanovic moving to the bench. The England international starts alongside David Luiz at the heart of defence.

For Southampton, Jay Rodriguez is the suprised choice to Rickie Lambert to lead the attacking line.

Chelsea v Southampton

Chelsea: Cech, Azpilicueta, Cahill, Luiz, Cole, Ramires, Lampard, Oscar, Mata, Hazard, Ba
Subs: Turnbull, Ivanovic, Torres, Ferreira, Marin, Terry, Bertrand

Southampton: Boruc, Clyne, Yoshida, Hooiveld, Shaw, Cork, Steven Davis, Schneiderlin, Puncheon, Do Prado, Rodriguez
Subs: Kelvin Davis, Lambert, Ramirez, Fox, Ward-Prowse, Seaborne, Chaplow

Referee: Michael Oliver (Northumberland)

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