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League Cup

  • 9 January 2013
  • • 19:45
  • • Stamford Bridge, London
  • Referee: A. Taylor
  • • Attendance: 40172
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Chelsea - Swansea Preview: Blues look to take home lead into semi-final second leg

Chelsea - Swansea Preview: Blues look to take home lead into semi-final second leg

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The hosts go into the last-four clash looking to win their third League Cup in nine years, while the Swans have never before progressed beyond the fourth round

  PROBABLE LINEUPS

CHELSEA

Turnbull
Azpilicueta, Cahill, Ivanovic, Bertrand
Lampard, Ramires
Mata, Oscar, Hazard
Ba
SWANSEA

Vorm
Rangel, Chico, Williams, Davies
Britton, Ki
Dyer, De Guzman, Routledge
Graham

Chelsea boss Rafa Benitez is likely to be without his first-choice goalkeeper, Petr Cech (groin), as well as his old Liverpool employee Yossi Benayoun (knee) for Wednseday's visit of Swansea.

John Terry (knee) is unlikely to make his return in the Capital One Cup semi final, while Oriol Romeu (knee) remains a long-term absentee.

Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel will also be unavalable for selection, having departed for the Africa Cup of Nations after Saturday's defeat of Southampton.

Neil Taylor (ankle) is the only player to be ruled out for the visitors, although Michael Laudrup may choose to rest top scorer Michu ahead of Saturday's trip to Everton.


  DID YOU KNOW?
  • Chelsea have conceded more than one goal in a single game only once in 13 fixtures since Rafa Benitez took over. They did so 11 times in their 21 games under Roberto Di Matteo this season.
  • The Blues have not scored less than five goals in any of their four domestic cup games so far this season, netting an astonishing 21 in total.
  • Swansea's form in front of goal in their own Capital One Cup campaign is almost as impressive, having averaged 2.5 goals per game across their three fixtures.
  • In the 100 years since they were founded, the Welsh club had never advanced further than the fourth round of the League Cup until this campaign.
  • Swansea's highest ever top-tier finish was sixth place, in 1982. By contrast, their manager, Michael Laudrup (pictured right), has finished in first place seven times, in four different countries.
  • Between them, these two sides have lost only one game in their combined last ten matches in all competitions.

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Last Five Matches
Odds
Team News
Available Squads
21Ross TurnbullGoalkeeper
2Branislav IvanovicDefender
3Ashley ColeDefender
23David LuizDefender
24Gary CahillDefender
28César AzpilicuetaDefender
7RamiresMidfielder
11OscarMidfielder
17Eden HazardMidfielder
9Fernando TorresStriker
8Juan MataStriker
48Henrique HilárioGoalkeeper
20Paulo FerreiraDefender
23Ryan BertrandDefender
27Nathan AkeDefender
8Frank LampardMidfielder
21Marko MarinMidfielder
9Demba BaStriker
25Gerhard TremmelGoalkeeper
4ChicoDefender
6Ashley WilliamsDefender
22Ángel RangelDefender
33Ben DaviesDefender
7Leon BrittonMidfielder
5MichuMidfielder
11Pablo HernándezMidfielder
15Wayne RoutledgeMidfielder
20Jonathan De GuzmánMidfielder
4Sung-Yong KiMidfielder
1Michel VormGoalkeeper
21Dwight TiendalliDefender
12Nathan DyerMidfielder
26Kemy AgustienMidfielder
30Danny GrahamStriker
9Itay ShechterStriker
Players to Watch
Oscar
Oscar
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 11
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0
The Brazilian international has been used more sparingly under Rafa Benitez than was the case previously, but he is likely to get a starting place on Wednesday. The 21-year-old makes up for what he lacks in physique with an intrepid work rate, and can not only identify the elusive, defence-splitting pass, but execute it with aplomb. He also has a knack of scoring spectacular goals at important times, and the majesterial playmaker could well be Swansea's undoing on Wednesday.
Nathan Dyer
Nathan Dyer
Position: Midfielder
Squad Number: 12
Games Goals YC RC
0 0 0 0

He tends to fly largely under the radar, but Dyer has been a reliable and impressive servant for Swansea over the past three-and-a-half season. With a low centre of gravity, sinewy strength and explosive pace, Dyer is one of his club's most potent goal threats. Likely to be facing a still-developing full-back in Ryan Bertrand, the ex-Southampton man will be looking to add to his tally of three goals so far this term.
Prediction
Given the two clubs' respective form in the domestic cups this season, it would be foolish not to expect at least a few goals on Wednesday night. Though Swansea could well find their way through Chelsea's newly reinforced backline, the elite level quality the hosts boast in the likes of Eden Hazard, Oscar and new man Demba Ba could well prove the difference in this clash.
Editor's Prediction

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