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League Cup

  • December 17, 2013
  • • 2:45 PM
  • • Stadium of Light, Sunderland
  • Referee: A. Taylor
  • • Attendance: 20731
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Capital One Cup Preview: Sunderland - Chelsea

Capital One Cup Preview: Sunderland - Chelsea

The Blues will make changes from the team that narrowly beat Crystal Palace as they travel to the Stadium of Light to take on the Premier League's bottom side.

Jose Mourinho has his sights set on winning the Capital One Cup for a third time as Chelsea prepares to face Sunderland in the quarterfinals.

The Portuguese won the competition twice in his first spell at Stamford Bridge, and they are just two victories away from reaching yet another final.

Eden Hazard scored twice earlier this month when Chelsea won 4-3 in a thrilling Premier League clash at the Stadium of Light.

That was its sixth consecutive win against Sunderland, and it will be favorites to progress to the semifinals, denying former Chelsea favorite Gus Poyet a trophy in his first season in charge of the Wearside club.

Chelsea come into the game on the back of a hard-fought 2-1 London derby victory over Crystal Palace on Saturday.

That victory ensured Mourinho's charges are just two points behind leaders Arsenal ahead of the clash between the two sides next Monday.

But first up is the long trip to Wearside and Mourinho is set to makes changes to his team.

Defender Branislav Ivanovic will play no part after picking up his fifth booking of the season against Palace, so Cesar Azpilicueta is set to play at right-back and Ashley Cole is expected to start.

Mark Schwarzer is also likely to start in goal, while Frank Lampard, Demba Ba and John-Obi Mikel will be hoping to be handed a spot in the XI.

Chelsea lost on penalties in the UEFA Super Cup in August, but Mourinho is not planning to put his players through extra spot kick practice ahead of the quarterfinal.

"I practice a lot and we always lose on penalties. This time we don't practice," he said.

Sunderland remains bottom of the Premier League with only nine points after it was held to a goalless draw at West Ham on Saturday.

But Poyet was encouraged by the display at Upton Park, and a victory over Chelsea would be a big morale boost for his side.

Jack Colback missed out at the weekend because of illness and Poyet will check on his availability ahead of the game.

Defender Carlos Cuellar (hip) and goalkeeper Keiren Westwood (shoulder) could miss out once again.

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Last Five Matches

Head To Head

Sunderland

Chelsea

Wins
2
0
3
Wins

Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Sunderland AFC SUN
Sunderland AFC Sunderland
Draw
Chelsea FC CHE
Chelsea FC Chelsea
88%

Top 3 Predictions

Sunderland AFC SUN
1 - 3
Chelsea FC CHE
Sunderland AFC SUN
0 - 3
Chelsea FC CHE
Sunderland AFC SUN
0 - 2
Chelsea FC CHE

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