The return in midfield of last season’s Chelsea Player of the Year Mateo Kovacic is the only change Frank Lampard makes to his side for today’s visit of Liverpool.

The Croatian was suspended at Brighton on Monday following his FA Cup final red card, but is back in place of Ruben Loftus-Cheek.

That means Kai Havertz and Timo Werner make their Stamford Bridge debuts from the start, and Reece James is again preferred at left-back. Jorginho is captain on the occasion of his 100th Chelsea appearance.

Explaining his team selection, Lampard said: ‘It’s a change from my point of view. Different games bring different problems. We’re playing the team that were the best in the country by a long way last season and Kovacic gives you some presence in midfield.

‘We want to play and get on the ball. Against Brighton it was tough for us to do that for different reasons but today hopefully we can get more of the ball there.'

Liverpool make one change from their opening-day win over Leeds, with Fabinho replacing Joe Gomez and expected to play at centre-back. Their new signing Thiago Alcantara is on the bench.

Chelsea (4-3-3): Kepa, James, Christensen, Zouma, Alonso, Kante, Jorginho (c), Kovacic, Havertz, Werner, Mount.

Subs: Caballero, Tomori, Azpilicueta, Barkley, Hudson-Odoi, Abraham, Giroud.

Liverpool (4-3-3): Alisson, Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Fabinho, Robertson, Keita, Henderson (c), Wijnaldum, Salah, Fabinho, Mane.

Subs: Adrian, Tsimikas, Thiago, Milner, Jones, Minamino, Origi.

Stats recap

Chelsea have won one of our last 11 Premier League meetings with Liverpool (five draws, five defeats), beating them 1-0 in May 2018 thanks to an Olivier Giroud goal.

Having won just one of their first 16 Premier League away games against Chelsea, Liverpool have won six of their last 12 at Stamford Bridge in the competition.

In all competitions, Chelsea have only failed to score in one of our last 23 meetings with Liverpool, a 0-2 defeat at Anfield in 2018/19.

Liverpool visit Stamford Bridge in the league in September for the third successive year.

Chelsea stats

Chelsea are seeking a seventh successive win at Stamford Bridge in all competitions since the defeat to Bayern Munich in February. We have kept five clean sheets in that run (including against Liverpool in the FA Cup) and conceded just a Kevin De Bruyne goal.

Chelsea will be aiming to keep four consecutive home clean sheets in the Premier League for the first time since January 2018.

Chelsea are unbeaten in our past 13 home league games against the previous season’s Premier League champions, winning the last three.