Chelsea FC vs Tottenham - Competition: Capital One Cup Final
Chelsea FC team aim for their first trophy since Jose Mourinho returned to take over the reigns once again.The Blues drew some favorable draws in their run to the semi-finals before taking on Liverpool, where they dispatched the Reds in extra time of the 2nd leg 1:0 (2:1 on aggregate) behind an Ivanovic goal. Now they have a shot at not only the trophy but also revenge against the Spurs, who beat Chelsea FC in a wild affair at White Hart Lane in their last meeting (5:3). Harry Kane had 2 goals and an assist in that match and the Zouma-Terry centre-back partnership must be wise to his sly movements. Jose Mourinho will be demanding a more assured defensive performance this time around, though his troops have admittedly struggled a bit recently with just 2 wins over their last 5 competitive fixtures. Furthermore, Nemanja Matic will be out suspended after his rash response to Ashley Barnes’ tackle last week, and things could be tough here on the favorites. However, they have earned the “favorites” label and have the stronger side on paper even in the absence of the Serbian, and the first major trophy of the English season should ultimately end up in Chelsea’s hands.
Tottenham crashed out of the Europa League on Thursday clearly with an eye set for Sunday’s title clash at Wembley Stadium. While they certainly had their chances against Fiorentina, key moments like Roberto Soldado’s completely botched 1-on-1 with the goalkeeper marred their day and ultimately cost them their European hopes. They have now failed to win any of their last 4 competitive fixtures, conceding 8 goals over this stretch for an average of 2 allowed per game. However, form typically goes out the window in a derby match and especially a title match, and the Harry Kane-led Tottenham shouldn’t be counted out. They have demonstrated their quality this season with wins over Chelsea, Arsenal, Everton, and Southampton, and manager Mauricio Pochettino is clearly an intelligent manager. But the major cause for concern this weekend may not necessarily be their ability to pull off the upset but rather their inexperience. Tottenham haven’t been to a title match at Wembley since 2008 (League Cup), and none of the anticipated players in their lineup for this Sunday were in that traveling squad. They are very young and could allow nerves to get to them a bit here, and even a moment of hesitation in a game of this magnitude can cost you dearly.
Chelsea: Courtois – Ivanovic, Zouma, Terry, Azpilicueta – Ramires, Fabregas – Willian, Oscar, Hazard – Diego Costa.
Tottenham Hotspur: Lloris – Walker, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose – Bentaleb, Mason – Lamela, Dembele, Eriksen – Kane.
Match date: 1 March 2015
Kick Off Time: 16:00 GMT
Kick Off Time: 16:00 GMT