Date: Sunday January 5th 2020
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Kick-off: 14:01 GMT
Today’s FA Cup third round game is a re-run of last year’s as we face Nottingham Forest a year after our last meeting at Stamford Bridge.
That one was an emotional experience, with Cesc Fabregas leaving the field in tears (and not because he missed a penalty), and the utter shock at Alvaro Morata bagging himself a brace as we came away with a 2-0 win. I had a fair bit of emotion aroused by our then manager, Maurizio Sarri as well, although I’m trying to put those sorts of feelings to bed now we have a ‘proper Chelsea’ legend who cares as much as we do.
Under Frank Lampard this season, we’ve seen young players brought into the side, we’ve seen some lovely football at times, but we’ve also had inconsistency – particularly at home. So, whilst Nottingham Forest, also in 4th place (in the Championship), come into today’s game off the back of three straight wins over Hull, Wigan and Blackburn, our recent form has seen us lose to Southampton, beat Arsenal and then draw last time out against Brighton. So, the outcome today could well be determined by our ability (or not) to get our act together at home.
Going into today’s game, it seems Chelsea manager, Frank Lampard has been hit by the bug flying around and Jody Morris says “Alonso is defo out. Ruben is an obvious one. Apart from that we’re still having a look at a few. At the moment not looking too bad. Should be able to select from a few. Fik (Tomori) has trained but not feeling the best. There’s been a bit of a bug flying about. I think it’s just time of the year so we need to put up with those sort of things.”
Nottingham Forest manager, Sabri Lamouchi meanwhile, says “I’m not a dreamer, I just want to be realistic.To be honest, we don’t have a chance, but football is football. We are facing a very good team, with big professionals and fantastic players, so I of course want to try and make a good image for Forest.”
For Chelsea, Ruben Loftus-Cheek (Achilles), van Ginkel (ACL), Olivier Giroud (ankle) and Marcos Alonso (hamstring) remain out. Fikayo Tomori and Billy Gilmour have both been unwell, so may miss out.
For Nottingham Forest, Chema may miss out after a knock on New Year’s Day, although Yuri Ribeiro (knee) should return.
CHELSEA (Possible line-up): Caballero; Lamptey, Christensen, Zouma, Emerson; Kovacic, Barkley; Mount, Hudson-Odoi; Pulisic; Batshuayi
NOTTINGHAM FOREST (Possible line-up): Samba; Jenkinson, Dawson, Worrall, Robinson; Semedo, Sow; Lolley, Carvalho, Adomah; Grabban
Chelsea 2-0 Nottingham Forest (5th January 2019)
CURRENT FORM (ALL)
- This is the fifth time Chelsea and Nottingham Forest have met in an FA Cup tie – Chelsea have progressed from the previous four, including a third-round 2-0 win last season.
- Nottingham Forest have lost their last five away matches against Chelsea in all competitions, with three of those defeats coming in FA Cup meetings.
- Chelsea have been eliminated from just two of their last 50 FA Cup ties against teams from outside the Premier League
- Nottingham Forest were eliminated by Chelsea in the third round last season.
Standard: Chelsea 3-1 Nottingham Forest
Sportsmole: Chelsea 2–1 Nottingham Forest
90min: Chelsea 3-2 Nottingham Forest
One area of progression I’m all for this year, is the kick-off one minute past the hour, as part of the joint campaign between the FA and Heads Together, to raise mental health awareness. I’ve always said football has the ability to influence a worldwide audience and with the zero suicide agenda never more important than it is right now, I for one, wholeheartedly support any effort to get mental health out from the many carpets it’s swept under.