CAPITAL ONE CUP
VENUE – Stamford Bridge
KO – 18:15 GMT
REFEREE – Lee Mason
Mark Clattenburg was the centre of attention on Sunday at Stamford Bridge. A controversial sending off Fernando Torres ruined an exciting match. Torres, already booked was interpreted to be simulate and was given a second yellow and got his marching orders. Six minutes before this incident Branislav Ivanovic was sent off for a last man challenge on Ashley Young. Chelsea had equalized at the start of the second half and was on the ascendancy. The match turned on its head after these two incidents and United eventually scored the decisive goal. This match, even though it is the Carling Cup will have much more impetus into and the Chelsea players will be definitely up for the match. There is a possibility that both clubs will put weakened sides for this match.
Sunday’s extraordinary events will ensure that the Chelsea players are up for the match. The Capital One Cup is the last on the list of priorities of the top clubs but even with weakened sides no love will be lost between the two sides after Sunday’s events. Roberto di Matteo was very critical of the referee Mark Clattenburg and he had every right to be. Wednesday is a new day and Matteo needs to pick up his team from Sunday and start afresh. The league cup is always an opportunity for the bigger clubs to give a chance to their youngsters to gain some valuable first team experience.
Manchester United won their under controversial circumstances at Stamford Bridge on Sunday. Sir Alex Ferguson has to take his side again to same venue with the home crowd’s vociferous hate for his side. The manager usually puts a reserve side in the League cup but Sunday’s events might have changed all that. The problem for Ferguson is that after facing one London side another will be waiting on the weekend. United host Arsenal at Old Trafford and Ferguson will have one eye on that. His team selection will depend heavily with Arsenal in mind. The newly adopted diamond formation made way for a traditional 4-4-2 formation at the weekend and it worked very well for half an hour after which United lost impetus and Chelsea were dominant. The manager needs to address that problem as both the diamond formation and the traditional 4-4-2 formation are both leaking goals. The problem, it seems doesn’t lie with the personnel but the formation.
Chelsea – The London club put out a relatively experienced side in the 3rd round against Wolverhampton Wanderers with the likes of Cahill, Terry, Hazard, Torres all featuring. Sunday’s events were extraordinary and Roberto di Matteo will be expecting a strong reaction from his side. The Italian may even put out a strong line up in the match. Turnbull who hardly had anything to do in goal against Wolves may replace Cech while Azpilicueta and Bertrand may start at the full back positions. Moses, the summer signing from Wigan might get a rare opportunity. Foreign recruits Piazon and Marin who impressed against Wolves will definitely feature against United. Romeu the Spaniard has been earning rave reviews but has seen his first team opportunities limited and the manager will be looking to give the youngster an opportunity to impress.
Manchester United – After the fracas at Stamford Bridge at the weekend it will be a perfect opportunity for the United manager to give his young troops a chance to shine. Returning Smalling might also make it to the squad as he needs to step up his match fitness. Ferdinand and Evans might be impressive rested with the likes of Keane and Wooton getting the chance in the centre of defense. The likes of Tuncllife, Lingard, Macheda and Petrucci might get the nod as they have been for the reserves. Not everyone will get a chance but for those who do it will be opportunity to impress the manager. The team will be a mixture of experience and youth as it was against the Round 3 opponents Newcastle United where the youngsters were put to the full test. Lindegaard, not a youngster by any stretch of imagination will definitely start in goal. Summer signings Henriquez and Powell have impressed for the reserves and will be hoping to feature against Chelsea.
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