Chelsea have responded well since slipping to a 1-0 defeat at the hands of London rivals West Ham a fortnight ago, with 3-1 and 1-0 score lines doing little to reflect the dominance they have enjoyed over Huddersfield and Southampton respectively.
Despite that, however, the Premier League title looks destined to leave Stamford Bridge for Manchester at the end of the season, meaning Antonio Conte’s search for alternative silverware becomes all the more urgent, starting in the EFL Cup tonight.
Bournemouth are their quarterfinal opponents, and how dearly Eddie Howe would love to add a Wembley appearance to his remarkable CV at the club. His side will be going all-out for victory, meaning that Conte must get his team selection right. This is the XI we expect him to go with:
|PLAYER||% MINS PLD||GLS||AST.|
|0||0||0 / 0|
|2||2||4 / 0|
|0||0||0 / 0|
|0||0||1 / 1|
|1||1||1 / 0|
|0||0||0 / 0|
|3||3||3 / 0|
|1||0||0 / 0|
|4||4||0 / 0|
|7||0||0 / 0|
|1||1||0 / 0|
|Totals||19||11||9 / 1|
|TOTAL PREMIER LEAGUE EXPERIENCE|
Rotation does look set to be the theme of the day, starting with Willy Caballero in goal. The Argentine has only played twice previously for the club, winning on both occasions despite failing to keep a clean sheet in either.
Danny Drinkwater’s Chelsea career has really picked up in recent months after a slow start, with a number of eye-catching performances endearing him to the Stamford Bridge faithful. Alongside He last started alongside Tiémoué Bakayoko against Liverpool last month, and their partnership will be given another shot here.
A goal every other game is generally seen as the marker of a highly efficient goalscorer, and Michy Batshuayi has hit that mark this season for Chelsea despite being far from first choice. He looks set to start alongside Pedro and Kenedy in a front line full of pace and movement.
Overall, it’s an incredibly strong Chelsea side and one that should easily be able to overcome Bournemouth on home territory. KickOff’s all-new Acca Smacker (below) reinforces this, using our unique predictive algorithm to give a 74% chance of the home win occurring.
Switching over to the ‘Form Streaks’ tab, users can see that this is due in no small part to Chelsea’s 5 match winning run at Stamford Bridge. They have been formidable at home during most of the Abramovich era, and that still remains the case.
Finally, flicking over to the ‘Pro Stats’ tab gives our most in-depth analysis yet of the match’s potential outcome. Using 18 key data points, 9 attacking and 9 defensive, from the past 10 games for each side, KickOff compares the two sides and finds that United come out on top in 15 of them. When the difference is so large, the outcome rarely goes the other way.