Chelsea are vying for their first piece of silverware under Maurizio Sarri in the Carabao Cup this season and have the task of overcoming a semi-final deficit against Tottenham.
The Blues were unfortunate to lose the first leg at Wembley 1-0, as Harry Kane’s penalty made the visitors rue plenty of missed chances in front of goal.
Sarri’s team will try to book a spot in the final by beating Spurs in the second leg at Stamford Bridge next Thursday in the home return.
Chelsea may now have some form of advantage, as they are going to be lining up against a much weaker opposition.
Spurs will go into the cup tie with a double blow, as key attacking pair Heung-Min Son and Harry Kane will both not be involved.
Son, who has 12 goals in all competitions this season, has been in brilliant form this campaign for Mauricio Pochettino’s side.
But he’s now departed to represent South Korea in the Asian Games and could miss the next five fixtures.
Meanwhile, Spurs have also confirmed that centre-forward Kane will be out of action until March with an ankle injury.
His 20 goal return this season proves he’s their greatest attacking threat and his absence could be pivotal to the final result.
Chelsea still have plenty of work to do if they want to beat a Spurs team that have had the better of individual matches, but it may just swing the tie to a more level playing field again.
They need to play on the front foot to win the game by a two-goal cushion and the defence will not need to be worried about the threat of Son or Kane.