Chelsea trail Spurs in the Semi Final
Written By: Robert Halter
Spurs met Chelsea for the third time in a League Cup Semi Final during the first leg of the Carabao Cup at Wembley stadium in early January. In the fourth minute, Willian combined with Eden Hazard, before the ball was driven past the left post by Ross Barkley. But Spurs responded a minute later with a delivery by Kieran Trippier and an over head kick from Harry Kane which rose over the crossbar. The Blues responded again in the seventh minute with a long ball by Willian and then a low strike from Callum Hudson-Odoi which was driven into Paulo Gazzaniga. In the ninth minute from a Willian corner, the ball was lobbed over the bar from Barkley. On twenty minutes, Hudson-Odoi was the link man for Hazard, whose strike was caught by Gazzaniga. But from Toby Alderweireld’s over the top ball, Kane drew a foul in the penalty box after tumbling over Kepa Arrizabalaga, and after referee Michael Oliver consulted the video assistant referee, he booked the Chelsea keeper before awarding Spurs a penalty, which Kane took and fired his spot kick into the bottom left corner in the twenty sixth minute. On thirty four minutes, from Willian’s ball across, N’Golo Kante snatched at his shot which was collected by Gazzaniga. In the fortieth minute, Willian found Marcos Alonso, whose low cross was clipped against the outside of the left post by Kante. In the next minute, from a Kante ball out to the right, Hudson-Odoi, bent the ball high over the top left corner of the upright. Just before the break, from a ball over by Barkley, a bending strike from Hudson-Odoi deflected off Danny Rose and was pushed against the top of the crossbar from the palm of Gazzaniga before the ball was cleared by Alderweireld. At the start of the second half, Barkley gave the ball away to Kane and Antonio Rudiger made a vital interception on Dele Alli. Spurs pressed again, when through an assist by Trippier, a left footed strike from outside the box by Christain Eriksen, was comfortably stopped by Arrizabalaga. In the fifty second minute, Alli and then Moussa Sissoko set up Kane, whose low measured strike was turned behind the left post at full stretch by Arrizabalaga. The Blues responded within sixty seconds, when Willian supplied Hazard, who struck the ball against Gazzaniga. In the fifty fourth minute, from a Willian pass, a blast at goal by Kante, was turned away by Gazzaniga, with an instinctive save. On fifty eight minutes, after trickery by Hazard, the ball spun off Rose for a corner which was taken by Hazard and headed on from Barkley, before a miss timed strike from Andreas Christensen, went agonisingly past the left post. The first Chelsea change was made when Willian was replaced with Pedro before a later substitution took place of Mateo Kovacic for Barkley. Spurs first switch was Erik Lamela for Heung-Min Son. The Blues last throw of the dice was bringing on Olivier Giroud for Hudson-Odoi. In the eighty fourth minute, from a Pedro cross and miss placed header by Davinson Sanchez, a rising effort by Alonso was caught by Gazzaniga. Within two minutes, through a pass by Cesar Azpilicueta, a shot on the right by Hazard across the face of goal was pushed out by Gazzaniga. In the proceeding Blues move, Hazard put the ball out wide to Pedro, whose strike was calmly kept out by Gazzaniga. Late reinforcements were brought on by the Lilywhites, with Oliver Skipp taking over from Harry Winks and then Fernando Llorente appearing for Eriksen, in stoppage time, as Tottenham Hotspur secured a first leg 1-0 lead over Chelsea before the return match at Stamford Bridge to decide which team would book a place in the 2019 Carabao Cup Final at Wembley stadium.