Middlesbrough and Chelsea meet in the first leg of their EFL Cup semi-final at the Riverside Stadium.
Chelsea reached this stage after overcoming Newcastle United in a nail-biting penalty shootout to reach the final four, while Michael Carrick’s troops put three past Port Vale without reply in the quarter-finals.
H2H / Stats
Middlesbrough won 3 direct matches. Chelsea won 18 matches. 4 matches ended in a draw.
Middlesbrough attacker Morgan Rogers picked up his second booking of the EFL Cup in the beating of Port Vale, meaning that he must serve a one-game suspension for Tuesday’s first leg. Finn Azaz and Sam Greenwood are cup tied after featuring for Plymouth Argyle and Leeds United earlier in the tournament, while Australian duo Samuel Silvera and Riley McGree are away on international duty alongside Senegal goalkeeper Seny Dieng.
Tom Smith (Achilles), Darragh Lenihan (Achilles), Lewis O’Brien (ankle), Marcus Forss (thigh) and Patrick McNair (back) remain out of contention for the time being.
Chelsea boss Pochettino is working around his own perpetual absentee crisis once more – a dilemma complicated by Nicolas Jackson’s AFCON call-up and a new hip injury for Christopher Nkunku, who was unable to make the squad for the beating of Preston at the weekend.
There is still an outside chance that Nkunku could be passed fit for the first leg – Ben Chilwell (hamstring), Carney Chukwuemeka (knee) and Benoit Badiashile (unspecified) are in the same boat – but Reece James (hamstring), Wesley Fofana (knee), Marc Cucurella (ankle), Robert Sanchez (knee), Lesley Ugochukwu (hamstring), Trevoh Chalobah (thigh) and Romeo Lavia (thigh) are definitely out. Andrey Santos is also ineligible on account of representing Nottingham Forest in the EFL Cup during his loan spell, while Ian Maatsen’s participation is also clouded in uncertainty amid reports that he has verbally agreed a loan move to Borussia Dortmund.
Probable Line Up
Middlesbrough XI: Glover; Van den Berg, Clarke, Fry, Bangura; Howson, Barlaser; Jones, Crooks, Latte Lath; Coburn
Chelsea XI: Petrovic; Gusto, Disasi, Silva, Colwill; Gallagher, Fernandez; Madueke, Palmer, Sterling; Broja
Middlesbrough’s efforts against title-chasing Aston Villa must be commended, but weary legs and fresh absentees will seriously harm the hosts’ chances of a positive first-leg result against a Chelsea side who now come good in the final third more often than not under Pochettino.
Bet on Chelsea win❌
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