Thu | Sep 21, 2017

CHELSEA VS SWANSEA CITY

Published:Friday | August 7, 2015 | 8:00 AM

CHELSEA (4-2-3-1)

COURTOIS, IVANOVIC, CAHILL, TERRY, AZPILICUETA, MATIC, FABREGAS, WILLIAN, OSCAR, HAZARD, COSTA

SWANSEA (4-2-3-1)

AYEW, MONTERO, SIGURDSSON, DYER, SHELVEY, CORK, TAYLOR, FERNANDEZ, WILLIAMS, RANGEL, FABIANSKI

Chelsea begin the defence of their Barclays Premier League title and are bidding to retain it for the first time in their 110-year history, after four championship successes in the last 10 years.

The Blues should be confident; in 23 opening-day fixtures in the Premier League they have lost just three, the most recent in August 1998, at Coventry. Since then, Chelsea have played 16 first-day fixtures, winning 14 and drawing two.

And they last lost the first game of the season at Stamford Bridge in August 1993, when they were beaten 2-1 by Blackburn Rovers.

More reasons for JosÈ Mourinho's men to be confident are last season's games against Swansea City; Chelsea won 4-2 at home against the Welshmen and 5-0 at the Liberty Stadium.

Furthermore, in 13 visits to Stamford Bridge Swansea have won just once - in 1925. Since that victory 90 years ago, the Swans have drawn three and lost nine.

Indeed, in the Premier League, Swansea have lost all four visits while conceding 11 goals and scoring just three. Overall they have lost on their last five visits, conceding 17.

Chelsea have doubts over striker Diego Costa, who missed the 1-0 Community Shield defeat by Arsenal last weekend with a hamstring problem.

Mourinho started with Loic Remy against the Gunners and could be tempted to give a first start to Radamel Falcao, signed on loan from AS Monaco - to replace the departed Didier Drogba - after a similar spell at Manchester United last season.

Swansea, who lost their last two Premier League games of last season, will be tempted to give a league debut to Andre Ayew, signed in the summer from Marseille.