Big Match Breakdown: Chelsea v Derby
Preview and odds for Carabao Cup clash
Tonight’s televised Carabao Cup action comes from Stamford Bridge as Frank Lampard leads his Derby County side to his old stomping ground at Chelsea.
The former Blues legend has impressed since taking charge of the Rams. They sit sixth in the Championship and knocked out Manchester United in the previous round.
We’ve already seen one upset this week as Nigel Clough’s Burton Albion knocked out his old team Nottingham Forest. Will we see another tonight? Kick off is 7.45pm and it’s all live on Sky Sports.
This will be the first meeting between the teams since 2014, when Chelsea won 3-1 in a League Cup tie.
Tonight is the 107th meeting, dating back to 1910. The head-to-head reads 39 Chelsea wins to Derby’s 38, but the Blues have won eight of the last nine.
Both teams are in excellent form. Chelsea are unbeaten this season, winning 11 of their 14 matches, while Derby have won eight of their last 14, losing only twice.
Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri is highly unlikely to call up Eden Hazard tonight. The Belgian is carrying a knock and the Blues’ 4-0 win over Burnley on Sunday suggested they can cope pretty well in his absence for now.
Sarri could be without Pedro and Olivier Giroud too, so Ross Barkley, Willian and Ruben Loftus-Cheek are set to provide attacking creativity behind Alvaro Morata. Cesc Fabregas could be in line for a rare start, too.
Lampard selected a strong team for the trip to Old Trafford last month, and is likely to do so again. Chelsea have given Derby permission for on-loan duo Fikayo Tomori and Mason Mount to feature against them tonight.
The Derby boss has favoured a 4-3-3 formation this season, with Tom Lawrence and Martyn Waghorn flanking Jack Marriott up front.
This won’t be like Derby’s clash with United. The Rams hustled the Red Devils that night, but Chelsea under Sarri like to dictate play from the off.
Even if Sarri is without Hazard, and he chooses to rest Jorginho as he did in the last round versus Liverpool, the Blues are likely to dominate the ball tonight.
Derby will have to be patient and composed, while keeping tabs on Willian, Barkley and Loftus-Cheek.
The Championship side aren’t without their own threats, however. Waghorn and Lawrence are both capable of bits of magic.
David Nugent and Jack Marriott lead the way for the Rams to score first at 12/1 apiece. The latter netted against United in the previous round.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing