FA Cup: Chelsea vs. Leeds United match preview, prediction, team news, lineups

Chelsea vs. Leeds United match preview, prediction, team news, lineups
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FA Cup: Chelsea vs. Leeds United – Following their heartbreaking loss in the EFL Cup final, Leeds United travels to Stamford Bridge on Wednesday to play Chelsea in the FA Cup, where a dejected Chelsea looks for revenge.

While Daniel Farke’s team celebrated a 3-1 victory against Championship leaders Leicester City on Friday night, the Blues were defeated 1-0 by Liverpool in front of the Wembley crowd on Sunday.

Before Sunday’s EFL Cup final kicked off, Mauricio Pochettino’s opposite number, Jurgen Klopp, could have assembled a full starting lineup of injured players.

FA Cup: Chelsea vs. Leeds United match preview, prediction, team news, lineups

With the Reds’ growing absence crisis on the Wembley field, the time had come for the Chelsea manager to break his trophy curse with an English championship.

Yet even as Klopp summoned the youth to bolster his battered team, Chelsea remained apathetic and appeared to be playing for penalties as extra time drew to a close, only for Virgil van Dijk’s diving header to nestle into the bottom corner to seal the title.

Pochettino’s excruciating wait for his first major honor in English football was made longer by the Dutchman’s contribution.

He still has a chance to win the FA Cup, after Chelsea defeated Preston North End 4-0 in the first round before defeating Aston Villa in an incredible fourth-round rematch.

Many people raised an eyebrow when Chelsea easily defeated the Lions at Villa Park, where Unai Emery’s team had previously excelled.

Chelsea has advanced past the FA Cup’s fifth round six times in the past eight seasons and has won 13 of their last 15 games at this point.

By the time Leeds arrive at Stamford Bridge, the players and heartbroken fans of the hosts are unlikely to have fully recovered from Sunday’s heartbreaking match.

The Blues are without a win in two straight home games after seven straight victories from December 3 to January 23.

In related news, Leeds won its sixth straight game in all competitions on Friday night when they played leaders Leicester City in the Championship.

Under the brilliant lights of Elland Road, Farke’s team narrowed the lead over the Foxes to just six points.

Wout Faes’ header in the fifteenth minute gave Leicester a tenuous lead that they would hold onto until the last ten minutes.

However, Connor Roberts, Archie Gray, and Patrick Bamford’s late concession to the Foxes saw the Whites pull off an incredible comeback.

Leeds’ second-tier record in 2024 is untarnished as they have won nine out of nine games since the start of the year.

FA Cup: Chelsea vs. Leeds United match preview, prediction, team news, lineups

The Whites’ only loss since January 1 came in their FA Cup fourth-round matchup against Plymouth Argyle. They are still gathering momentum in their pursuit of an instant return to the big time.

Farke’s team did, however, make up for their Elland Road gaffes with a 4-1 extra-time thrashing at Home Park in brutal weather, advancing them to the fifth round for the second consecutive year.

However, since making it to the quarterfinals of the 2002–03 competition, they have not advanced any farther.

The Whites’ last victory over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge dates back even further to a Premier League match in December 1999. Since then, the Blues have defeated their Championship rivals at home in West London six times in a row.

Chelsea FA Cup form:

W D W

Chelsea form (all competitions):

L L W W D L

Leeds United FA Cup form:

W D W

Leeds United form (all competitions):

W W W W W W

Though Thiago Silva’s groin ailment did not heal in time for the 39-year-old to play, Chelsea did not suffer any new injuries in the EFL Cup final, whereas Liverpool left Wembley somewhat worse for wear—albeit with winners’ medals around their necks to boot.

It will take time to determine whether Silva is healthy enough to lead the backline on Wednesday; Marc Cucurella (ankle) is in the same boat.

Wesley Fofana (knee), Reece James (thigh), Lesley Ugochukwu (thigh), Romeo Lavia (thigh), Carney Chukwuemeka (ankle), and Benoit Badiashile (groyne) are still out of the picture.

Read More: FA Cup: Liverpool vs. Southampton match preview, prediction, team news, lineups

Robert Sanchez, among other players who might profit from the quick turnaround are Trevoh Chalobah, Alfie Gilchrist, Noni Madueke, Christopher Nkunku, and Mykhaylo Mudryk. Robert Sanchez was back in the matchday squad at Wembley, though.

With Karl Darlow (finger), Pascal Struijk (groyne), Sam Byram (leg), and Stuart Dallas (hip) all sidelined and unable to participate in the fifth-round match, Leeds may sympathise with Chelsea with their defensive issues.

The visitors prevailed in Friday’s match, though, and Farke will have Burnley loanee Roberts available for the fifth round; the right-back was not registered for the first match, so he was unable to participate in the replay against Plymouth.

Because of their contributions to the Whites’ incredible comeback against Leicester, Roberts and Bamford have both declared themselves eligible for starts at Stamford Bridge; nonetheless, Ethan Ampadu ought to start against his old employers right away.

Chelsea possible starting lineup:

Sanchez; Gusto, Gilchrist, Chalobah, Colwill; Gallagher, Fernandez; Madueke, Nkunku, Mudryk; Sterling

Leeds United possible starting lineup:

Meslier; Roberts, Ampadu, Cooper, Firpo; Gruev, Kamara; Gnonto, Rutter, Anthony; Bamford

Our prediction for this match 2-0 or 2-1 won by chelsea

FA Cup: Chelsea vs. Leeds United match preview, prediction, team news, lineups

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