With all the hype in the football world around the Champions League at the moment, the Europa League group stage returns on Thursday night and it involves an old friend this year: Chelsea. The Blues start their campaign with a trip to Greece to face PAOK in their opening Group L match but there’s no place for Danny Drinkwater in the squad which means he won’t feature in Europe for at least the first half of the season.

Embed from Getty Images

The decision comes as a result of UEFA’s rules that only four FA-trained players are allowed to be picked per English team. Cesc Fabregas, Victor Moses, Ross Barkley and Gary Cahill are the four that have been selected which forces Drinkwater and Rob Green out of contention. Clubs also have four spots available for club-trained players but Chelsea have only used two: Andreas Christensen and Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

Both Green and Drinkwater have been selected in the 25-man Premier League squad as the rules state that eight players can be picked that are either FA-trained or club-trained while UEFA only allows four of each. This makes it even clearer that the former Leicester midfielder is straying further and further out of the picture at Stamford Bridge and as much as it was reported over the summer, it does now look as though a move away is on the cards.

The surprise inclusion in the squad is that of Ethan Ampadu who is getting closer to a first-team place every week following his first Wales start a couple of weeks ago.

Embed from Getty Images

The full Chelsea squad for the Europa League:

1. Kepa Arrizabalaga

13. Willy Caballero

2. Antonio Rudiger

3.Marcos Alonso

21. Davide Zappacosta

24. Gary Cahill

27. Andreas Christensen

28. César Azpilicueta

30. David Luiz

33. Emerson Palmieri

44. Ethan Ampadu

4. Cesc Fabregas

5. Jorginho

7. N’Golo Kante

8. Ross Barkley

10. Eden Hazard

17. Mateo Kovacic

22. Willian

11. Pedro

12. Ruben Loftus-Cheek

15. Victor Moses

18. Olivier Giroud

29. Alvaro Morata


An avid writer of football content from across the world and a specialist when it comes to English football.