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Chelsea take on Spurs in the first-leg of Carabao Cup’s semi-finals tonight. Official line-ups have been unveiled as Alvaro Morata is ruled out due to a minor injury he suffered earlier this morning. Callum Hudson-Odoi replaces the Spaniard in the attacking trio.

TOTTENHAM HOTSPURS (4 3 1 2) – Gazzaniga, Trippier, Alderweireld, Sanchez, Rose, Winks, Sissoko, Eriksen, Dele, Son, Kane

Subs: Lloris, Davies, Foyth, Walker-Peters, Skipp, Lamela, Llorente

Manager: Mauricio Pochettino

CHELSEA (4 3 3)  Kepa, Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger, Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, Barkley, Willian, Hazard, Hudson-Odoi

Subs: Caballero, Zappacosta, Ampadu, Luiz, Kovacic, Pedro, Giroud

Manager: Maurizio Sarri

Venue: Wembley Stadium

Kick-Off: 8PM GMT

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Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata upstaged teammate Cesc Fabregas on his last appearance with the Blues as the former Real Madrid star managed to score a brace which sent Maurizio Sarri‘s men to FA Cup Fourth Round on Saturday afternoon.

The ex Arsenal and Barcelona star, who missed a penalty in a tough first half at Stamford Bridge, then received a warm standing ovation as he left the pitch with five minutes left to go in the second period.

It is understood Fabregas will join AS Monaco in the next few days, after being handed the captain’s armband for his last game in a Chelsea shirt.

However, Alvaro Morata wanted to share his feelings via Instagram with an emotional post dedicated to his compatriot: “You do not know how much I’m going to miss you!” wrote the Spaniard.

“To you and your wonderful family, thank you very much for helping us in EVERYTHING possible.

“Thanks for all the moments lived and good luck in everything you do!”

 

 

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The Spaniard was determinant in Blues’ 2-0 home win against Nottingham Forest earlier in the afternoon.

Cesc Fabregas, who was handed the captain’s armband, missed a chance from the penalty spot in the 30th minute on his last game for Chelsea before joining AS Monaco on a permanent move. The Spaniard received a warm standing ovation in the second half as he left the pitch with 5 minutes left to go.

Eden Hazard came off the bench to replace Ruben Loftus-Cheek in a tough first half for the England international, who limped off after picking-up a minor injury.

Chelsea were dominant in the second period as they found the lead with Alvaro Morata, well assisted by Callum Hudson-Odoi, before doubling the score thanks to a fine header from the Blues’ forward.

CHELSEA (4-3-3): Caballero; Zappacosta, Christensen, David Luiz, Emerson; Barkley, Fabregas (Kante 85′), Ampadu; Loftus-Cheek (Hazard 41′), Morata (Azpilicueta 74′), Hudson-Odoi

NOTTINGHAM FOREST (4-2-3-1): Steele; Daria, Yacob, Fox, Janky; Guedioura, Colback; Cash (Lolley 57′), Carvalho, Osborn; Murphy

Scorers: Morata 48′ 59′
Bookings Barkley, Colback

 

 

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Maurizio Sarri has confirmed his side need ‘something different’ to improve and strengthen Chelsea‘s forward options following a goalless draw against Southampton at Stamford Bridge last night.

The Italian boss, speaking after the game, told SkySports“The club knows very well my opinion. I think we need something different for characteristics,” 

“I’m not in charge of the market. I have to try to improve my players, my team, my offensive phase, or better my offensive phase in the last 20 metres. The club knows my position, my opinion. It’s up to the board”.

“At the moment we’re in trouble with the offensive players.”

With Olivier Giroud sidelined due to an ankle injury, Chelsea are currently keeping an eye on Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson, according to reports in the Mirror earlier today.

The club announced the signing of Christian Pulisic from Borussia Dortmund on a £58m move yesterday morning. The USA international will spend the remaining months of current season with the Bundesliga side, before joining Blues next summer.

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Chelsea failed to reduce the gap on Man City and Tottenham as Southampton held on for a point at Stamford Bridge, a bad-tempered draw for the Blues following two away wins in a row.

Maurizio Sarri‘s men had several chances to open the scoring in a tough first half against the Saints, but goalkeeper Gunn made two brilliant saves to deny Alvaro Morata’s header as well as Eden Hazard’s effort in the 34th minute.

Winger Willian was forced to leave the pitch after suffering a knock from defender Yoshida earlier in the first half.

Southampton created their first chance of the game in the second period as Armstrong tried to beat Kepa Arrizabalaga through a fine shot, which was deflected by the Chelsea star. The Spaniard also stopped a low effort from former Chelsea midfielder Oriol Romeu.

Alvaro Morata managed to put Blues in front with 20 minutes left to go but was flagged offside in a controversial call. The Chelsea forward had been brilliantly assisted by Cesc Fabregas, who replaced Ross Barkley in the second half.

Another save from Southampton goalkeeper Gunn denied Morata’s shot from a close range in the 78th minute, before Marcos Alonso tried to break the deadlock from 20-yards-out, then appealing for a penalty in the extra-time.

 

Tonight’s goalless draw at Stamford Bridge means Chelsea remain 4th in the Premier League table just three points behind Man City, who face Liverpool tomorrow night. Manchester United are rising up the table after grabbing their fourth win in a row since Gunnar Solskjær replaced José Mourinho.

Maurizio Sarri’s men will take on Nottingham Forest on Saturday (FA Cup Third Round) before facing Tottenham Hotspurs in the first leg of Carabao Cup semi-finals. The next Premier League clash for Blues is scheduled on Saturday 12nd January (against Newcastle United at home).

CHELSEA (4-3-3) – Kepa; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, David Luiz, Alonso; Kante, Jorginho, Barkley (Fabregas 69′); Willian (Loftus-Cheek 37′), Morata, Hazard

SOUTHAMPTON (3-4-3) – Gunn; Bednarek, Yoshida, Vestergaard; Valery, Ward-Prowse, Romeu, Cedric; Redmond (Stephens 90+5′), Ings (Long 45′), Armstrong (Austin 90′)

Bookings: Rudiger, Bednarek, Romeu

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Chelsea striker Olivier Giroud, who scored a decisive goal later in the second half against Vidi FC, came off the bench to replace injured Alvaro Morata just before the half-time whistle in the Blues’ Europa League clash tonight.

Speaking after the game, Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri was also asked to give an injury update on the Spaniard, who suffered a knock on his left knee.

T”he first impression of the doctor is that it isn’t too bad” he said.

“But we have to check tomorrow” Sarri added.

Chelsea will face Brighton Hove&Albion on Sunday afternoon before taking on Bournemouth in the Quarter Finals of Carabao Cup on Wednesday.

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Chelsea and Maurizio Sarri fail to complete a perfect record in the Europa League group stages as Blues were held to 2-2 draw from Hungarian side MOL Vidi FC in Budapest.

An early opener scored by Willian was denied two minutes later, when Ethan Ampadu‘s header became an unfortunate own goal. The hosts found an unexpected lead in the second half through a volley from 15 yards out, before Olivier Giroud managed to level with a curled shot into the top corner. The Frenchman had replaced injured striker Alvaro Morata (knock) earlier in the first half.

No pain for Chelsea, who end up their run as leaders of Group L. European football pauses until February, this means Maurizio Sarri and Blues will find out their next opponents on Monday.

CHELSEA (4-3-3) – Caballero; Zappacosta, Ampadu, Christensen, Emerson; Fabregas (c), Barkley, Loftus-Cheek; Willian (Pedro 56′), Morata (Giroud 46′), Hudson-Odoi

MOL VIDI (4-5-1) – Kovacsik; Fiola, Juhasz (c), Vinicius, Stopira; Nego, Hadzic (Patkai 85′), Huszti (Hodzic 81′), Nikolov, Milanov (Kovacs 81′); Scepovic

BOOKINGS Loftus-Cheek, Juhasz, Huszti, Vinicius, Nego

SCORERS: Willian 30′, Giroud 75′ Ampadu OG 32′, Nego 56′

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The perfect evening for Sarri and co who console after the bad saturday night at Wembley against Tottenham.

Giroud’ double opened the match, in the second half arrived the first senior goal for the 18-year-old Callum Hudson-Odoi who scored and also assisted Alvaro Morata when at 78′, after three minutes from his entry into the field, went in goal scoring the poker and his 6th goal of the season, first one in UEL.

Sarri smiling obviously satisfied for the results and he he declared himself happy expecially because was hard find motivation after qualification already conquered.

“I think we approached the match very well, so I am very happy with this. The last three matches we had problems with this. This was really very good. Before the match we knew were in the first of the group after the BATE result, so it wasn’t easy to find a big motivation”.

He didn’t know who choose among Greek players but appreciated number 10 “I don’t know. I have seen only three or four matches from PAOK. So it is difficult. I like very much the number 10. I have to study again the other matches”

He spoke also about his scorers of the night, Giroud, little Hudson-Odoi and Alvaro.

Sarri laughed after the question about the ‘non sense’ yeld of Morata: “I don’t know. His attitude is not a problem for the group. In training he is doing very well.”

The Spanish after his goal against Arsenal in August has crossed a black out period, without go in score for five matches and playing not too much. The forward ended up at the centre of market rumors.

Sarri spoke also of Giroud who finally came back after a long flat period: the French, unlocked in the last UEL’ match against BATE, scored again in the last Premier’ match against Tottenham, the only goal scored in the defeat against Spurs before the confirmation of his return with the double of tonight “I think it was really very good, as was the pass of Cesc. It was a very good goal”.

About the young Hudson-Odoi who, maybe conquested European stage expressed appreciation saying himself happy for his goal that will give him confidence but italian coach is also cautions and doesn’t get unbalanced.

“I think that he played very well but the type of match was for his characteristics. They had ten men after seven minutes, he is able to play in this and I want to see him when we have to play more in the defensive phase.

“The goal will give him confidence, like Giroud and Morata. I am very happy with this. Two strikers scored and that is very imporant. I don’t know if he is able for the Premier League at 18, especially in a big team”.

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Callum Hudson-Odoi bagged his first ever senior goal in Chelsea‘s 4-0 win against PAOK at Stamford Bridge tonight. The visitors suffered an early red card as defender Khacheridi was sent off after stopping Olivier Giroud as the last man.

The French forward found the lead in the 27th minute following a brilliant display from Pedro on the edge of the penalty area. Giroud scores again in the first half, while Callum Hudson-Odor netted his first senior goal cutting inside and firing home past the goalkeeper with a shot which goes behind his near post. There’s still one to come as Alvaro Morata, well assisted by the 18-year-old, headed home from a close range.

Chelsea’s top spot was already guaranteed as a result of BATE Borisov‘s home win against MOL Vidi earlier this evening.

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Chelsea take on Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley Stadium in Premier League MatchDay 13 this evening. No changes for Maurizio Sarri‘s side from the last home game against Everton (0-0) before the international break.

Erik Lamela and Lucas Moura start from the bench in Spurs’ line-up. Also Jan Vertonghen not included in the starting XI as the Belgian defender is still recovering from an injury. Serge Aurier replaces Kieran Trippier (groin injury) in defense.

TOTTENHAM – Lloris, Aurier, Alderweireld, Foyth, Davies, Sissoko, Dier, Eriksen, Alli, Son, Kane.

Substitutes: Gazzaniga, Vertonghen, Walker-Peters, Winks, Lamela, Moura, Llorente.

Manager: Mauricio Pochettino

CHELSEA – Kepa, Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Luiz, Alonso, Jorginho, Kante, Kovacic, Willian, Morata, Hazard.

Substitutes: Caballero, Zappacosta, Christensen, Barkley, Fabregas, Pedro, Giroud.

Manager: Maurizio Sarri

Venue: Wembley Stadium

Kick-Off: 5.30PM

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