Chelsea - Manchester United Preview: Di Matteo out to avenge league defeat with cup victory
The Stamford Bridge manager will be keen for revenge against Sir Alex Ferguson's side after the Old Trafford club controversially took the points in the recent Premier League game
By Tom J Doyle
Azpilicueta, Cahill, Luiz, Bertrand
Moses, Mata, Marin,
Vermijl, M Keane, Wooton, Buttner
Nani, Powell, Fletcher, Scholes, Anderson
Branislav Ivanovic and Fernando Torres will miss out for Chelsea after being sent off against Manchester United in the 3-2 Premier League defeat on Sunday.
Club captain John Terry is still banned after receiving a four-match suspension for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand.
Frank Lampard (calf) has no set return date, and will probably miss out on a chance to claim a starting position under Roberto Di Matteo.
Manchester United are still without captain Nemanja Vidic (knee) and Phil Jones (knee), while Chris Smalling (metatarsal) is likely to be in contention for a place against Arsenal on Saturday.
Sir Alex Ferguson may stick with the back line which featured against Newcastle in the last round of the Capital One Cup, with Scott Wooton, Michael Keane, Alexander Buttner and Marnick Vermijl set to feature.
Shinji Kagawa is definitely out for the visitors after picking up a knee injury against Braga.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Chelsea won the last Capital One Cup clash between the two sides in 2005, coming out 2-1 winners over two legs.
- Manchester United have won three of the past four meetings between the sides, with no goalless draw in the league since 2007.
- Despite being top of the Premier League, Chelsea have now lost their last two games to Shakhtar Donetsk and Manchester United.
- United have been in front at half-time in only five of their 13 games this season, but have won all five matches.
- Chicharito (pictured) has scored in five of his eight games against Chelsea for the Red Devils, including his winner on Sunday.
- Sir Alex Ferguson's side have won their last five games in all competitions, three of them away from home.
- Neither side has kept a clean sheet in their last three games - Chelsea have conceded seven, and United six.
- Robin van Persie has scored six times at Stamford Bridge, a record for a visiting player.
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Top 3 Predictions
Chelsea FC 1-2 Manchester United
- 13.07 %
Chelsea FC 2-3 Manchester United
- 12.84 %
Chelsea FC 2-1 Manchester United
- 11.99 %
|Premier League (EPL)||26 Aug 2013||Manchester United 0 - Chelsea FC 0|
|Premier League (EPL)||5 May 2013||Manchester United 0 - Chelsea FC 1|
|FA Cup (FA)||1 Apr 2013||Chelsea FC 1 - Manchester United 0|
|FA Cup (FA)||10 Mar 2013||Manchester United 2 - Chelsea FC 2|
|Capital One Cup (CCUP)||31 Oct 2012||Chelsea FC 5 - Manchester United 4|
|7 Dec 2013||Stoke City 3 - Chelsea FC 2||EPL|
|4 Dec 2013||Sunderland 3 - Chelsea FC 4||EPL|
|1 Dec 2013||Chelsea FC 3 - Southampton 1||EPL|
|26 Nov 2013||Basel 1 - Chelsea FC 0||UCL|
|23 Nov 2013||West Ham 0 - Chelsea FC 3||EPL|
|12||John Obi Mikel||Midfielder|
The 23-year-old has come a long way in a short space of time for Chelsea, with a start in last year's Champions League final confirming Roberto Di Matteo's faith in him. The left-sided player can operate in either defence or on the flank, and his pace will be important against a United side likely to feature the nimble Nani and Danny Welbeck. Bertrand's attacking prowess will also be important against an inexperienced United back line, and he could hold the key to the tie.
The young striker was in fine form for Manchester United last season, but since the arrival of Robin van Persie, the 21-year-old has struggled for game time. The fine form of Javier Hernandez in his last two outings may well push Welbeck further down the pecking order at Old Trafford, so a chance to impress Sir Alex Ferguson at Stamford Bridge could be vital in determining the next few weeks for Welbeck. His pace and skill could stretch Roberto Di Matteo's defence, especially without the experienced John Terry and Branislav Ivanovic.
Manchester United showed on Sunday that despite their defensive shortcomings this season, they are an attacking force to be reckoned with. However, it will be interesting to see how their inexperienced defence cope with a Chelsea side - and crowd - still fuming over contentious decisions in Sunday's league clash. Roberto Di Matteo may field the likes of Juan Mata to put United's youngsters to the sword, and while Ferguson will have a few tricks up his sleeve, two wins in a week at Stamford Bridge may be a stretch too far. Expect a ferocious, fearless display from the hosts.
Times In BST
Live Final scheduled Suspended Cancelled Postponed