Chelsea will kick off their Carabao Cup campaign tonight at Stamford Bridge against Championship side Barnsley.
The Blues were beaten out of the competition early last season by Manchester United and will be looking to go as far as possible this time or perhaps winning it.
Chelsea lost their last match at Stamford Bridge to Liverpool last weekend and will be hoping for a massive turnaround tonight to put some confidence in everyone.
What to expect
For a side that is struggling in the Championship to come to Stamford Bridge, you only expect nothing less than a thumping from Chelsea.
Obviously the Blues will not put out their strongest 11 tonight but we shouldn’t be expecting mediocre players all through in the squad. Lampard revealed yesterday in his press conference that tonight is an opportunity to give some players the playing time to gain fitness.
The players he was taking about are obviously the high profile players like Chilwel and Thiago Silva who have been out due to fitness issues.
With these calibre of players in the squad chelsea could be highly rampant on poor Barnsley.
Injuries update / Suspensions
Chelsea have been unable to field their best 11 since the start of the season but Lampard has confirmed that they are close to that. He even revealed that Thiago Silva and Ben Chilwel are now fit and would be in the squad tonight available for selection.
Lampard also confirmed that Pulisic and Ziyech are very close to full fitness but their inclusion in Barnsley game is unlikely, however, we can be expecting them in our next Premier League match against West Brom on Saturday.
On suspensions, Christensen will obviously not be available for tonight after picking up a red card against Liverpool last weekend.
As I said earlier, Lampard revealed that he would use this match to test the fitness level of most of his players and also he claimed that the covid 19 regulations has made it difficult to include youth players in the squad.
With that being said, we should be expected a squad full of experience tonight.
At the back we would most likely be seeing a combination of Thiago Silva and Antonio Rudiger. Thaigo will be most likely handed his debut tonight while Rudiger who was not even in the squad against Liverpool is yet to receive any game time this season. Tonight will be a perfect time for Lampard to give him some minutes.
The full backs is expected to be Azpilcueta and Ben Chilwel with the obvious reason of trying to gain fitness.
I think Lampard would try to test Kante again in the sole defensive midfield role tonight. He has used the French midfielder in different positions since the beginning of the season and tonight will be a perfect time to allow Kante adapt to his original position.
In central midfield, Barkley could fit in well, he always does well against smaller oppositions while Kai Havertz is expected to start in the number 10 role for the first time this season. He has been played in multiple positions by Lampard already but yet to play in his favourite no 10 position.
For our attack, Odoi has played just 11 minutes while Giroud is yet to get any at all. So both of them would most likely start tonight including the ever present Mason Mount as support in LW.
For the goalkeeper tonight, Lampard have already confirmed twice that Caballero is the one starting claiming the decision was made even before the Liverpool’s game.
See Full Expected Lineup Below
Mount Giroud Odoi
Chilwel Rudiger Silva Azpi
Guys what do you think about the match tonight and also about our predicted lineup?
Leave your answers and your score predictions in the comment section below