Carabao Cup final: How Chelsea are plotting Liverpool’s downfall including the N’Golo Kante factor

LondonWorld football expert Rahman Osman gives the lowdown on where the Wembley clash between Chelsea and Liverpool can be won and lost.
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Chelsea will hope to win their sixth Carabao Cup trophy when they welcome Liverpool to Wembley on Sunday afternoon.

The Premier League seems to be slipping away from Thomas Tuchel’s side but a domestic trophy to add to the Super Cup won earlier in the season and the Club World Cup will still make the campaign a successful one.

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The Blues saw off the challenge of Tottenham Hotspur to reach the final while Liverpool are still in with a chance of winning the Premier League after closing the gap on leaders Manchester City.

Both teams are built for big occasions and the expectations are that this will be a very tactical encounter that could be decided by the finest of margins.

So here is what Liverpool can expect from Chelsea at Wembley.

Danger men: N’Golo Kanté and Kai Havertz

Kante is built for big occasions and has made a career of turning up for the big games and winning the man of the match.

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He will fancy another day at Wembley and that can only be bad news for Liverpool. The French midfielder normally covers every blade of grass and brings out the best in his teammates.

Kai Havertz has more than proven that he is the man to get the big goals for Chelsea in a Cup final.

He scored the winner in the Champions League final and doubled up for the winner in the Club World Cup. He will be hoping to make it a personal hat-trick when comes up against Liverpool.

He warmed up to the final with a fine goal and performance against Lille in the Champions League and manager Thomas Tuchel will hope he lives up to his big game pedigree.

Chelsea’s strength

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Chelsea’s strength is their pragmatism, which makes it very hard for teams to break them down, especially during big games.

They rarely commit men forward and only attack when they sense danger and know they are well covered.

Since Tuchel lost full-backs Ben Chilwell and Reece James Chelsea have played with an almost back five, with the replacement full-back always tucking in.

Weakness

Chelsea’s weakness has been its lack of chance creation and that has partly affected the form of striker Romelu Lukaku.

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With the three centre-back system the wing backs are key to the way they attack. Tuchel and the team have decided to keep things tight and that has affected the attacking machinery of the team.

It’s expected that Liverpool will dominate the ball, but that even if that doesn’t mean they will pull Chelsea apart.

Chelsea’s form going into the game

The Blues have won their last five games going into the game, including a league win against Crystal Palace away and beating Lille at home in the Champions League.

Injury news

Chelsea have been boosted by the return of key players, with the manager confirming that everyone apart from Chilwell trained and are contention for the game at Wembley.

Secret weapon

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Both Chelsea and Liverpool use the same secret weapon: set pieces. When the going gets tough, free-kicks and corners are key to unlocking games.

Expect to see the Blues adopting various set-piece techniques to try and unravel their opponents.

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