The cup final is finally here! After our dramatic path to Wembley was decided at Sheffield over a month ago, Tottenham Hotspur travel to Wembley in search of glory against London rivals Chelsea. After arguably the game of the season between the pair at White Hart Lane earlier in the year, Spurs will be hoping for a repeat of that day this Sunday.
After a less than encouraging performance in Florence on Thursday, Spurs fans everywhere will be backing the team to change recent fortunes in the final. We need a performance, we need a victory, we need a trophy.
Venue: Wembley Stadium
Television Coverage: Sky Sports 1
Stats (via BBC Sport)
Spurs ended a 10-match winless run against Chelsea in all competitions (D5, L5) by triumphing 5-3 at White Hart Lane in the Premier League on New Year’s Day. Tottenham have won the two most recent League Cup meetings, beating Chelsea 2-1 after extra-time in the 2008 final and triumphing 5-1 at home in a 2002 semi-final second leg to win 6-3 on aggregate.
The 2008 League Cup final win over Chelsea is Tottenham’s most recent trophy. They lost on penalties to Manchester United in the 2009 final. Younes Kaboul is the only player involved in the 2008 triumph who is still at the club.
This is Tottenham’s 19th cup match of the season and 45th fixture in all competitions – the most of any Premier League side. Chelsea have played 40 matches.Ten of Tottenham’s 12 goals in the League Cup this season have been scored in the second half. They have come from behind to win in eight league and cup matches this season. Goalkeeper Michel Vorm and defender Jan Vertonghen have played every minute of Tottenham’s League Cup campaign so far.
Chelsea, like Spurs, have won the League Cup four times. Only Liverpool (8 wins) and Aston Villa (5) have lifted the trophy more often. Chelsea’s last two League Cup final victories came under Jose Mourinho in 2005 and 2007. All three of Mourinho’s domestic final appearances as Chelsea boss have ended in triumph, having also won the 2007 FA Cup.
Petr Cech, John Terry and Didier Drogba played in both the 2005 and 2007 League Cup finals under Mourinho. Drogba scored in both, as well as in the Wembley defeat by Tottenham in 2008. The Blues opened the scoring in each of their five matches on the way to this season’s final. However, their only clean sheet came against Liverpool in the semi-final second leg. Felipe Luis is the only player to start all five of Chelsea’s games in this season’s competition.
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has no injuries ahead of this important clash, but having played 90minutes in Italy, there will certainly be some tired bodies on show at Wembley. The biggest exclusion for Chelsea is the suspended Nemanja Matic.
Starting XI – Vorm, Walker, Dier, Vertonghen, Rose, Mason, Bentaleb, Eriksen, Chadli, Dembélé, Kane
Score – Chelsea 2-2 Tottenham Hotspur (Spurs to win on penalties)