Chelsea are all set to take on second division side Derby County in the quarter-finals of the Capital One Cup at Pride Park on Tuesday.
The Capital One Cup presents Chelsea with a genuine chance to win their first piece of silverware this season, the final of which is scheduled to take place on 3rd March at the Wembley stadium.
TEAM NEWS, INJURY UPDATES AND SUSPENSIONS
Jose Mourinho will be resting most of his senior players for this match, considering they played against Hull City just 3 days earlier, and have a tough test on Monday away at Stoke City. Loic Remy is expected to start upfront with Mohamed Salah and Andre Schurrle playing on the flanks. John Obi Mikel might keep his place in midfield while Fabregas may start after missing out against Hull City due to suspension. Jose Mourinho may hand a starting berth to a youth player like Lewis Baker or Ruben Loftus-Cheek in midfield. Kurt Zouma will definitely start at centre half while Azpilicueta may get the nod after being rested against Hull City. Petr Cech will man the post with Courtois still out with injury. Nathan Ake still remains out with a hamstring problem.
Steve McClaren’s team will be without defender Ryan Shotton, who is serving a one match ban after he was sent off in their Championship match against Middlesbrough on Saturday, for denying the opponent striker a goal scoring opportunity with a deliberate foul. Derby further have injury worries over Jamie Ward. Experienced midfielder John Eustace is out with an adductor injury and will not be available for selection until their next match against Norwich City, according to First-Team coach Paul Simpson.
Chelsea got back to winning ways in the Premier League against Hull City with a comfortable 2-0 win with Hazard and Costa scoring in each half, maintaining their 3 point lead at the top over Manchester City. While the Capital One Cup may be last in the order of significance when it comes to trophies, Jose Mourinho would like to win all trophies possible, inculcating a winning habit into the team. Most of the first team players will be rested for Tuesday’s clash. It may seem that this is an easy fixture for Chelsea, but last season Chelsea just about won at Pride Park in an FA Cup tie, with 2 goals late in the second half doing the trick. So Chelsea can not afford to be complacent at any cost.
Derby County sit 3rd in the Championship, fighting for promotion. With 4 wins in their last 6 matches, Derby County saw their good run of form face a barrier, as they lost their last match in the Championship against Middlesbrough, who incidentally, are managed by Aitor Karanka, Jose Mourinho’s assistant coach at Real Madrid, while the first goal in the 2-0 loss was scored by Patrick Bamford, who is on loan from Chelsea. Knowing the difficulty of the task at hand, Steve McClaren said:
“We have to dust ourselves down and walk away with humility, credit the opponents, which we will do, and look forward to the game against Chelsea. We know that we have to perform better than we did at Middlesbrough, otherwise Chelsea could do us even greater damage.”
The Capital One Cup, known as the Carling Cup then, was the first trophy Jose Mourinho won with Chelsea in his first season in 2004-05. Chelsea have won the League Cup 4 times, with their last victory coming in the 2006-07 season, also with Jose Mourinho.
LAST 5 HEAD TO HEAD
Derby 0-2 Chelsea 05/01/2014
Chelsea 6-1 Derby 12/03/2008
Derby 0-2 Chelsea 24/11/2007
Chelsea 2-1 Derby 30/03/2002
Derby 1-1 Chelsea 28/10/2001
PREDICTED STARTING LINE-UPS
Chelsea: Cech(GK), Azpilicueta, Zouma, Terry(C), Luis, Mikel, Fabregas, Schurrle, Salah, Loftus-Cheek, Remy.
Derby County: Grant(GK), Keogh(C), Christie, Buxton, Forsyth, Bryson, Mascarell, Hendrick, Russell, Hughes, Martin.
Derby County 0-3 Chelsea
TIME: 1945 GMT / 0115 IST
VENUE: Pride Park
REFEREE: Jonathan Moss
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Edited By: Vikram Vadiganeni