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Mauricio Pochettino may be about to upset two Chelsea players after Leicester FA Cup win

A topsy-turvy game in west London sparked into life when Nicolas Jackson’s terrific work set up Marc Cucurella to tap in at the far post, and Chelsea had the chance to go two up midway through the first period when Sterling won a penalty.

Palmer is understood to share his spot-kick duties with Sterling and Enzo Fernandez even though the youngster has performed flawlessly from 12 yards this season, converting five from five since he first stepped up at the start of October.

It was therefore curious to see Sterling take on the responsibility for himself. There was an element of frostiness in the way Palmer threw the ball at his team-mate after a brief discussion about who would take it.

Sterling had scored four and missed four over the course of his career before kick-off on Sunday, and he added another to his miss tally with a tame effort down the middle.

The incident should serve as a wake-up call for Pochettino and his reluctance to put all his trust in Palmer. The 21-year-old is Chelsea’s top scorer this season and has gone down a storm with supporters since his £40million move from Manchester City.

Pochettino would risk upsetting Sterling and Fernandez by definitively taking them off penalty duties, but doing so seems the most logical course of action given Palmer’s unblemished record and excellent form.

Aside from the penalty incident, Chelsea fans also vented their frustration later in Sunday’s quarter-final when, with the tie still firmly in the balance, Sterling stepped up to take a dangerous free-kick just outside the box. Palmer once again stood and watched as his fellow ex-City star blazed a wayward effort miles off target, sparking boos from the Stamford Bridge crowd.

Palmer has been the Blues’ best attacking player this campaign, bagging himself a call-up to Gareth Southgate’s England squad ahead of the Euros, and he has surely earned greater authority over Chelsea’s set-pieces at the expense of Fernandez and Sterling.

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