First, it is important to point out to all our fans that this article is a speculative one. But considering the number of years I have been following Chelsea, I believe I should be totally spot on once the official team list for tonight’s match is released. Enjoy.
After Sunday’s clash against the Champions ended in a hard fought draw, the Blues are back in action against Championship side Bolton Wanderers in a midweek league cup fixture.
With a Premier League game in the weekend, immediately following this 3rd round fixture, Mourinho will be looking to manage his squad as much as possible, with matches against heavy weights like Arsenal and Manchester United around the corner.
The tie against Bolton might see the Blues trot out fringe players, who up till now have yet to be given a chance in the team. Players like Filipe Luis, Nathan Ake, Kurt Zouma, Mohammed Salah, Petr Cech and Loic Remy are likely to see minutes on the pitch in mid week.
HEAD TO HEAD
April 13, 2010 – EPL
Chelsea 1- Bolton Wanderers 0
Dec 29, 2010 – EPL
Chelsea 1 – Bolton Wanderers 0
Jan 24 2011 – EPL
Bolton Wanderers 0 – Chelsea 4
Feb 25, 2012 – EPL
Chelsea 3 – Bolton Wanderers 0
A Chelsea win here is mostly important because were this competition not in existence, there would be no avenue through which the likes of Nathan Ake, Kurt Zouma and Petr Cech would get any meaningful time on the football pitch this season. Getting as many fringe players involved in as many games as possible is good for moral, plus it also ensures that they are fit and psychologically ready to compete when called upon in more important games.
Irrespective of who plays, the London side should be favorites and will be playing for the win.
LAST FIVE MATCHES
Sep 21, 2014- EPL
Manchester City 1 – Chelsea 1
Sep 17, 2014 – CL
Chelsea 1 – Schalke 1
Sep 13, 2014 – EPL
Chelsea 4 – Swansea 2
Aug 23, 2014 – EPL
Chelsea 2 – Leicester City 0
Sep 20, 2014 Championship
Wolves 1 – Bolton 0
Sep 16, 2014 Championship
BoltonWanderers 3 – Rotherham United 2
Sep 13, 2014 Championship
Bolton Wanderers 0 – Sheffield Wednesday 0
Aug 26, 2014 League Cup
Crewe Alexandria 2 – Bolton Wanderers 3
Aug 23, 2014 Championship
Brighton 2 – Bolton Wanderers 1
While the above results show that Chelsea remain unbeaten in all competitions, they also show how inconsistent Bolton’s form has been as they have lost 2, won 2 and drawn one of their last five. This is a sequence of results that have left the side in 21st on the Championship table.
It is also probably a good omen for Chelsea, that they will play host to a team that is yet to win away from home this season, in what is sure to be a continuation of such an unfortunate stat.
POSSIBLE LINE UPS
CHELSEA – Cech, Ake, Luis, Zouma, Ivanovic, Mikel, Ramires, Salah, Remy, Schurrle, Drogba
BOLTON- Lonergan, Ream, Mills,Moxey, Dervite, Lee Chong yong, Garvan, Spearing, Feeney, Mason, Davies
Jose Mourinho’s team will be hoping to wrap the tie up as quickly as possible, to avoid the embarrassment of having to bring in actual first team players, if they end up struggling against a side that even Championship sides don’t struggle against.