Chelsea vs Preston – FA Cup: TV channel, team news, lineups and prediction

Chelsea’s 2023/24 FA Cup campaign begins on Saturday evening as they host Championship strugglers Preston North End in the third round.

The Blues were once synonymous with success in this competition and have lifted the FA Cup six times since 2000, but they were beaten in three consecutive finals between 2020 and 2022.

Mauricio Pochettino once played down the significance of England’s biggest domestic cup during his time at Tottenham, but he can ill-afford to do the same in west London – even if he has already guided the Blues into the Carabao Cup semi-finals.

There have undoubtedly been bright spots at the start of the Argentine’s tenure, but inconsistency and haphazard finishing have plagued the Blues in 2023/24 thus far.

Still, they’ll be expected to overcome a Preston side that have lost four of their last five in the second tier. The two-time winners will be looking to stun the hosts on Saturday after succumbing to Tottenham in the fourth round last season.

Here’s 90min’s preview of Saturday’s FA Cup third round tie.

Chelsea vs Preston H2H Record (Last Five Games)

Current form (all competitions)


TV channel/live stream

United Kingdom

BBC Red Button, BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport Web

United States



Sportsnet One, Sportsnet World, Sportsnet World Now, Sportsnet Now, Sportsnet Now Plus

Alfie GilchristAlfie Gilchrist

20-year-old Alfie Gilchrist has appeared off the bench this season / Visionhaus/GettyImages

Chelsea’s injury list is still extensive and Pochettino is bound to give chances to several youngsters on Saturday.

Robert Sanchez, Wesley Fofana, Marc Cucurella, Reece James and Ben Chilwell are certainly out, while Enzo Fernandez, Lesley Ugochukwu, Romeo Lavia, Trevoh Chalobah, and Carney Chukwuemeka are all doubts.

Mykhailo Mudryk, Ian Maatsen, Raheem Sterling and Alfie Gilchrist are all in contention. Christopher Nkunku could make his second start for the club.

Predicted Chelsea lineup vs Preston (4-2-3-1): Petrovic; Gilchrist, Disasi, Badiashile, Colwill; Caicedo, Fernandez; Sterling, Nkunku, Mudryk; Broja.

The visitors have been in dire form and their issues can’t be blamed on any sort of injury crisis. Former Burnley midfielder Robbie Brady is the only fitness doubt heading into this cup tie.

Predicted Preston lineup vs Chelsea (4-1-4-1): Woodman; Potts, Storey, Lindsay, Hughes; McCann; Browne, Whiteman, Frokjaer-Jensen, Millar; Evans.

The woes that have stricken Chelsea this season certainly aren’t conducive to success in cup competitions, but the Blues should still have too much for Preston on Saturday.

There will be fringe players out to impress, while Nkunku has shown flashes of his brilliance after finally recovering from injury. Expect the Frenchman to star in this cup tie amid a fairly comfortable home win.

Prediction: Chelsea 2-0 Preston


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