This afternoon sees us at Wembley for the Capital One Cup – or League Cup for those of us who still use old money – in what we hope is our first final of the season.
Our opponents, that lot from North London, are more than confident it seems, after the 5-3 win over us New Year’s Day although to be fair to them, Harry Kane has given them plenty of reason to be buoyant this season. In fact, the only fly in their ointment if they’re looking for excuses, is their trip to Florence on Thursday.
The League Cup was the first trophy Mourinho won during his first stint as Chelsea manager and he’s taking this final no less seriously but we’ll have to show better form than we have recently if Mourinho is to add another League Cup to his trophy haul.
Ahead of this afternoon’s cup final, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho says “It is a final we have to play and a final we have to win. This is the only moment since I arrived in July 2013 that I don’t think about the future of this club. I just think about the moment, I just think about this game. Chelsea cannot win everything and cannot win every season. If you want to do that we have to change country to where the competition is not so hard. Chelsea, in the last 10 years, won just the League Cup twice but was many times at Wembley and won FA Cups, won Premier Leagues and the European Cup. We try to build with this new generation of players and try to make Wembley something normal for us and try to go there year after year.”
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino meanwhile, says “It is about our performance, it is a final and it is about winning not about playing good. It is important to get the trophy. Chelsea is one of the best teams in the world and I think that whoever plays for Chelsea, they have the same philosophy and great team – for us, we need to be focused on our game.
Jose and I have a very good relationship from Spain. He is a manger I admire a lot. I think he is one of the best, if not the best, in the world. For me it is an honour to play a final against him.”
For Chelsea, John Obi Mikel (knee) misses out through injury, whilst Nemanja Matic misses out through FA incompetence. Ramires is likely to come in.
For Spurs, Pochettino has no new injury worries and hasn’t upset the FA enough to be missing any key players.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Courtois, Ivanovic, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta, Ramires, Fabregas, Oscar, Willian, Hazard, Costa
SPURS (Possible line-up): Lloris, Walker, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose, Dembele, Bentaleb, Mason, Chadll, Eriksen, Kane
Spurs 5-3 Chelsea (1 January 2015)
■Chelsea and Spurs have each won the League Cup 4 times
■Chelsea’s last two League Cup final victories came under Jose Mourinho
■Spurs beat Chelsea in the League Cup final in 2008
■Spurs have won nothing since that 2008 League Cup
■Chelsea last won the League Cup in 2007
■Our last meeting saw Spurs end a run of 10 games against us without a win
■Drogba has scored in all 8 games he’s played at Wembley with Chelsea
With 11 goals in our two games already this season, we can expect a few more today. Apart from that though, there’s no easy prediction for today.