John Barnes states his prediction for Chelsea v Sunderland

John Barnes is backing Chelsea to return to winning ways against Sunderland on Satuday

John Barnes is backing Chelsea to kick-off the post-Jose Mourinho era with a 1-0 victory over Sunderland at Stamford Bridge on Saturday afternoon.

The Portuguese coach was dismissed by the west London club on Thursday afternoon in the wake of the Blues’ 2-1 loss to Leicester City at the King Power Stadium on Monday night.

That result left Chelsea languishing in 16th place in the Premier League table and just a point above the relegation zone after 16 games.

Guus Hiddink is set to be appointed as Mourinho’s successor at Stamford Bridge until the end of the season at least.

And former Liverpool star Barnes feels that the Blues are likely to secure a narrow victory over the Black Cats in west London on Saturday.

Barnes wrote in his blog for Titanbet: “Despite all that’s happened at Chelsea recently I still think they’ll beat Sunderland.

“Sam Allardyce’s team won’t roll over and will be fired up for this, but sometimes players start playing well in situations like the one at Stamford Bridge. Goalscorer – Diego Costa.”

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Chelsea have lost nine of their opening 16 Premier League games this season to leave their title defence in tatters.

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