There was a wonderful virtual show between London rivals Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur last Sunday afternoon in the Capital One Cup final. It was a pity to Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho that he failed in his first game after returning back to Stamford Bridge, Spurs haven’t won a trophy either, which would comfort Jose Mourinho.
The game will be hotly contested, with the Blues eager to avenge their 5-3 defeat at White Hart Lane on New Year’s Day. In preparation for the game we decided we would let FIFA predict what is going to happen in the final. We played out the final taking control of Chelsea and Spurs and proved to be a memorable final.
As far as team selection concerned Mourinho decided it would be John Obi Mikel, not Ramires, to replace the suspended Nemanja Matic in midfield. The Nigerian played as the midfield anchor with Oscar and Cesc Fabregas just ahead of him. Willian and Eden Hazard occupied the wide positions with Diego Costa up front. Pochettino took Mousa Dembele out of the team following his disappointing display against West Ham and went with both Ryan Mason and Nabil Bentaleb in the middle with Nacer Chadli, Christian Eriksen and Erik Lamela behind Harry Kane.
The game started at a frantic pace with the man the moment, Kane, bursting through within seconds but after cutting back onto his right foot he fired his shot straight at Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian was then called into action, diving to his right to make a superb one handed save to deny Eriksen. Spurs were creating most of the early chances, with Eriksen in particular benefitting from the absence of Matic. The Dane was tormenting Mikel and after 23 minutes he lunged in on Eriksen to pick up the first booking of the match.
If Chelsea fans were starting to question Mourinho for including Mikel in the side they were soon singing his praises when Fabregas floated in a corner just before half-time which the midfielder powered past Hugo Lloris. It really was the only way that Chelsea were going to get into the game, a set-piece, and it was the perfect time to score. Eriksen nearly equalised straight from the kick-off but his looping shot was tipped over by Courtois.
After the break whatever Mourinho said at half-time clearly worked because Chelsea came out with renewed purpose. They pushed Spurs hard and the second goal came when Lloris parried Costa’s shot straight into the path of Willian who made no mistake. Once again the instant response came from Eriksen and once again Courtois had to be alert to tip the ball over.
Eriksen then went close twice again, first tamely hitting the ball at Courtois but then a header caught the Belgian out but it came crashing back off the bar. This was a mirror image of an incident in the first half when some pinball in the Chelsea box resulted in the ball hitting the post, with Courtois’ goal leading a charmed life.
Chelsea looked to be closing towards a comfortable win in the cup final but they had reckoned without the force that is Harry Kane. With around 20 minutes to go Kane picked up the ball around 40 yards out, he dribbled past two players and then unleashed a shot into the bottom corner. Courtois will be disappointed he didn’t react quicker but it was a sensational goal from Kane and the moment of magic that his team desperately craved. All of a sudden they were back in the cup final.
Mourinho decided to bring Juan Cuadrado on for Willian whilst Spurs took off Mason and Lamela, bringing on Andros Townsend and Mousa Dembele. In the 84th minute Eriksen was given yet another chance to score but his free-kick went agonisingly wide of the post. Having had to bring Ramires on in the first half for the injured Oscar Mourinho was wary of making another change, choosing to avoid romance by keeping Costa on the pitch rather than bring Drogba on.
However it was a decision that became totally vindicated in the dying stages of the match when Costa was set through on goal by Fabregas and he kept his cool to lift the ball over Lloris and seal the result for Chelsea. At the end of the game Chelsea players rejoiced around their unlikely hero, John Obi Mikel. Mourinho ultimately made the right tactical decisions and his team’s experience won out, Click into UTfifa15coins.com for whole video.