Arsenal v CHELSEA: League Cup Preview

Venue: Emirates Stadium

Date: Tuesday, 29 October

Kick-off: 19.45 GMT

 

Well they say there’s no rest for the wicked, so we must be on that list because less than 48 hours after our late win against City, it’s away at Arsenal tonight in the Capital One cup.

It goes without saying Jose Mourinho isn’t impressed with the scheduling but the Chelsea manager, who won the League cup twice in his first spell in charge at Chelsea is likely to utilise several of our players who didn’t feature at the weekend.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger meanwhile, who hasn’t won this cup before (or any other silverware for some time come to that), won’t surprise anyone if he continues to field players from the local comprehensive in this competition, although given who he’s up against, he might take it a little more seriously than he usually does.

 

MANAGER’S VIEWS

Going into tonight’s game against his old adversary, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says “I will rotate against Chelsea but play with a team that has a good chance to qualify as well.  You worry about fatigue a little bit but not too much. Sometimes when you play every three days you look tired and then in three days you are flying again. It goes a bit in cycles.”

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho meanwhile, with more than a touch of the sulks about the timing of this one, says “We are going to give the game that the people that put the game on Tuesday want.  If they want a big game, we cannot give the big game. If they want the players that were playing [on Sunday], we cannot give them that.  If they want Arsenal to win a trophy, that’s a help, because if they want a big game between two big teams in London, they should put the game on Wednesday and not on Tuesday.”

 

SQUAD NEWS

For Arsenal, Theo Walcott (abdominal), Yaya Sanogo (back), Lukas Podolski (hamstring), Mathieu Flamini (groin), Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Abou Diaby (both knee) are all injured and Mikel Arteta is suspended.  Serge Gnabry (ankle) faces a fitness test although Jack Wilshere is fit.

For Chelsea, van Ginkel (ligaments) is a long-term absentee, Juan Mata, Kevin De Bruyne, Michael Essien, Demba Ba and Mark Schwarzer are likely to get a chance with Jose set to use the squad.

 

TEAMS

ARSENAL (Possible line-up): Fabianski (GK); Jenkinson, Koscielny, Vermaelen, Monreal; Wilshere, Ramsey; Gnabry, Rosicky, Cazorla; Bendtner

CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Schwarzer (GK); Azpilicueta, Luiz, Kalas, Bertrand; Mikel, Essien; De Bruyne, Mata, Willian; Eto’o

 

LAST MEETING

Chelsea 2-1 Arsenal (20th January 2013)

 

PREDICTION

Nevermind current form in the league or previous form in this competition, there’ll have been a bit of kidology from both sides in the run-up to this game. It’s the league cup, it’s a London derby, we have no idea what side either manager will put out, so if anyone wants a go at predictions based on all of that, fill your boots!

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