West Bromwich Albion’s Saido Berahino wasn’t afforded his first England cap during the international break and will have a point to prove when he takes on his new pal Gary Cahill on Saturday.
More than 30 years since Steve Hunt was the last Albion outfield player to wear the Three Lions, Berahino was just a Roy Hodgson nod away from making his England debut in matches with Slovenia and Scotland.
However, the Three Lions did the job without him as the exciting 21-year-old forward remained confined to the substitutes bench but will have learned plenty from his experience with the full squad.
Chelsea’s central defensive rock Cahill will have been tested by the pacy youngster in England training last week and the Birmingham Mail’s Brian Dick reckons Berahino will be raring to go when the two meet again at Stamford Bridge.
He said: “Berahino missed out on the chance to win his first England cap during the international break, remaining resolutely on the bench against both Slovenia and Scotland.
“He will be determined to prove a point to Roy Hodgson against England colleague Gary Cahill and return to scoring ways after a couple of blanks against Leicester and Newcastle.
“Despite not playing for his country, Berahino is still his country's leading Premier League goal scorer and he has a habit of producing against the big clubs.”
Berahino will be fresh after missing those two England fixtures but even he won’t be as desperate to get on the field as Craig Gardner after the midfielder served a one-game ban in Albion’s last fixture.
“The midfielder will be like a bull at a gate after being suspended against Newcastle,” Dick continued.
“Albion missed him terribly and the fear that either Youssouf Mulumbu or Claudio Yacob would come in and steal his spot didn't materialise.
“Gardner has developed into Albion's midfield conscience since his summer arrival from Sunderland and is almost indispensable at both ends of the pitch.”
Joleon Lescott moved to the Hawthorns on a free transfer from champions Manchester City in the summer and Dick believes it is one of the best pieces of business any Premier League outfit will do this season.
“West Brom's defensive leader, his belated inclusion following a pre-season injury coincided with an immediate upturn in performances,” Dick added of Lescott.
“As a former Premier League winner with extensive international and Champions League experience he will not be fazed by any of Chelsea's big names.
“Even better he's helped his defensive partner Craig Dawson play the best football of his young career. The rock around which Albion are built.”
Keep up to date with all the build-up, matchday and post-game reaction to Chelsea v West Brom right here on GetWestLondon.