Thomas Tuchel will finally be afforded the chance to rotate his Chelsea squad after what has been a hectic first fortnight in charge of the club having replaced Frank Lampard.
Tuchel is unbeaten in his first four matches at the helm, the draw with Wolves in his first match 24 hours after taking the job the only points he has dropped so far, adding to wins over Burnley, Spurs and Sheffield United.
He will have had plenty of time now to look at his squad of players on the training ground at Cobham but each time he has been preparing for matches thanks to the relentless nature of the 2020/21 campaign with its late August start and punishing fixture schedule.
Tuchel has settled on the majority of his defence and identified his preferred midfield duo in the first couple of weeks in charge but there are some question marks over other areas.
But against Barnsley in the FA Cup on Thursday, the German head coach will finally get a chance to see some fringe players in match action and if they can do a job for him in the Premier League as the Blues chase a top four finish.
The likes of Billy Gilmour, Kurt Zouma, Tammy Abraham, Emerson and Kepa should all be in with a chance of starting at Oakwell in the fifth round tie.
Click to play
Tap to play
The video will auto-play soon8Cancel
Abraham has played just 58 minutes for Tuchel so far since he replaced Frank Lampard, 13 of them as a substitute against Wolves and the first 45 against Burnley before he was subbed off at half time.
Zouma is yet to play for Tuchel, nor has Gilmour or Emerson or Kepa. Gilmour was an unused substitute at Sheffield United, the first time he has made a matchday squad under the German.
Tuchel has often been quick to slap down any concerns over a lack of playing time for Gilmour, who Chelsea were happy to keep in January rather than loan him out like they did with Fikayo Tomori, admittedly before Tuchel arrived.
“There was no need…