When Chelsea face Tottenham Hotspur for the first leg of the EFL Cup semi-final on Tuesday, Mauricio Pochettino will be without six first-team players while Chelsea will welcome back three injured stars.
Maurizio Sarri will have Olivier Giroud, Pedro and Willian back from injuries after missing the FA Cup home game against Nottingham Forest last weekend. The trio have been declared fit for the trip to Wembley but it is uncertain whether they will play any part of the game.
Only Ruben Loftus-Cheek is a certain miss for the game with his back injury ruling him out until February according to Sarri.
Sarri on injuries💬: "Pedro, Willian and Giroud are doing better. Yesterday they had training with the group. I don't know if they will be able to play tomorrow. Not for 90 minutes. Loftus-Cheek is out now. We have to understand the situtation with his back" #CFC
— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) January 7, 2019
What is rather intriguing for Sarri is how he strategizes to beat Spurs after the 3-1 drubbing in the Premier League encounter in November. The revenge plan may have been boosted after Lucas Moura joined Victor Wanyama, Eric Dier, Moussa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen in the physio room with a knee injury the Brazilian picked up in his side’s 7-0 thrashing of Tranmere in the FA Cup last Friday.
Heung Son-Min is also out of the clash as he jets off to join South Korea’s national team for the 2019 Asian Cup.