Chelsea welcome Manchester United to Stamford Bridge in the Carabao Cup tomorrow evening.
The Blues were finalists in the competition last season, narrowly losing to Manchester City on penalties at Wembley, so will be looking to go one better this time out.
Frank Lampard’s men thrashed Grimsby Town 7-1 in the previous round, though the challenge they face in the form of the Red Devils will of course be much trickier – especially considering Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side head into the match in promising form having recorded a solid draw against Liverpool and then beaten Norwich 3-1 throughout the previous two weeks.
N’Golo Kante’s season has been hampered by persistent injuries this time out, with the France international left out of the Chelsea squad on nine occasions this season.
The 28-year-old has been absent for Chelsea’s previous three matches in the Premier League and Champions League combined, with his last appearance coming in the 4-1 win over Southampton at the start of October, where he did manage to get himself on the scoresheet at St. Mary’s.
Chelsea’s official website claim that a date for Kante’s return ‘remains unclear’, which suggests that the former Leicester midfielder could well miss this clash against United.
Although having a player of Kante’s quality in the starting line-up would be a huge positive, the Blues haven’t exactly suffered without him in the side.
The west London club have won the five games they’ve played without Kante (via Transfermarkt), so it will not be seen as the end of the world if he’s unavailable for the visit of United.
On the same page, however, he is still a hugely valuable asset to the side so if he is back and fit, it would certainly serve as a significant boost.
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