All you need to know ahead of the Chelsea vs Tottenham clash
Date: Thursday 24th January 2019
Kick off: 19:45
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Chelsea Team News
Recent doubts were cast on Maurizio Sarri after issues on and off the pitch. The latest setback being a 2-0 defeat to Arsenal, and Sarri publicly criticising his squad.
The Blues have recorded 20 points from their last 12 games in the Premier League, but four defeats have left the Blues just three points ahead of Arsenal and Manchester United in the race for fourth place.
There is little doubt that Chelsea have lost their way, and this match will serve as the perfect opportunity to respond to Maurizio’s criticism.
Chelsea face a must-win EFL Cup semi-final second leg against Tottenham.The Blues will be looking to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit against Mauricio Pochettino’s injury-plagued Tottenham.
The only injury concern for Chelsea is Ruben Loftus-Cheek, who suffered a back problem earlier this month.
Eden Hazard is expected to lead the attack, while Callum Hodson-Odoi may feature from the right. The Blues are hoping to have Gonzalo Higuain available as they close in on a loan deal for the striker, but he must be registered by 12pm on Wednesday to be eligible.
Predicted XI (4-3-3): Kepa; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Christensen, Alonso; Kante, Jorginho, Barkley; Willian, Higuain, Hazard
Tottenham Team News
Tottenham will be looking to earn a place in next season’s Champions League, but Pochettino is aware of the pressure he is under to deliver silverware. Pocchetino will acknowledge that the tie they have is far from over given the limitations with his squad.
The Spurs face a crisis up front with Harry Kane and Dele Alli injured. Heung-min Son on international duty and Fernando Llorente out of sorts. However, Tottenham showed fighting spirit to win 2-1 at Fulham on Sunday which set themselves up for Thursday night’s derby.
Holding a lead ahead of the clash at Stamford Bridge has given the Spurs an edge, as well as knowing they have won each of their last three showdowns with Chelsea.
Pochettino will believe that a clean sheet can be recorded at Stamford Bridge with Spurs having conceded just five goals in seven matches, three of which came in the December capitulation against Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Predicted XI (3-4-3): Gazzaniga; Sanchez, Alderweireld, Vertonghen; Trippier, Winks, Dier, Davies; Eriksen, Lamela, Lucas
- Thursday’s clash will be the 163rd competitive meeting between the pair, with Chelsea registering 68 wins in comparison to 54 victories for Spurs
- The Blues have won just 4 of the last 11 contests during a period stretching back to the start of 2015
- Spurs have prevailed on five occasions, while Pochettino has also witnessed his side emerge victorious in four of the last half-a-dozen clashes.
- Their last meeting came on January 8, with Harry Kane’s penalty sealing a 1-0 first-leg win for Spurs at Wembley.
Betting Odds & Prediction
Chelsea are faced with an uphill battle to secure their spot in the Carabao Cup final. The Blues come into this clash on the back of a disappointing 2-0 defeat at Arsenal and have lost two of their last three. So, the Blues will hope that home advantage can play a part here, but Spurs have won their last three meetings with Chelsea. We predict that Spurs will secure the result required to land a Carabao Cup final spot and get the better of their city rivals.