This weekend see’s the return of the magic of the FA Cup. It has become the norm for the big Clubs to select their fringe and young players in such fixtures, but as the rounds progress will we continue to see this as the stakes get higher?
Chelsea has been drawn against a Championship side in the shape of Wolverhampton Wanderers who could certainly provide a potential banana skin for The Blues. But Antonio Conte is still likely to field some of his fringe players, as he has done throughout the Cup Competitions so far.
He will certainly have a desire to win this competition and have a chance of completing the traditional English double trophy win collecting the Premier League Title and the FA Cup, but he will want to do this with the same players he has given a chance to in previous rounds. If they win though and progress to a draw against a big Club, will it still be the same situation? I believe that it will.
So that means that on Saturday at 17.30hrs UK time, Chelsea fans will enjoy once again seeing some of the names they don’t get to see play very often. It is likely that Conte will start the likes of Asmir Begovic, John Terry, Nathan Ake, Kurt Zouma, Nathaniel Chalobah, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Michy Batshuayi.
This will certainly excite supporters across the globe, many of whom have been calling for some of these players to be featured more often and to be given a chance to shine. But is this really enough for them to show what they are capable of? Unfortunately not.
But with that said, it will certainly give some of the Senior players a chance to rest up whilst also giving the players that come in a genuine shot at taking their places, should any of them get injured at the back end of the season, a period of the season that will be so important for Conte’s men should they go onto cross the finish line and win the League.
Wolves will provide a tough opposition for Chelsea, even though they appear to be sat in an uncomfortably close to relegation position in the League right now. They have had a good Cup run though and although they have lost their last two league games we cannot forget that they have had a decent January beating Aston Villa and knocking both Stoke City and Liverpool out of the FA Cup. They will also have no pressure and home advantage with the Stadium expected to be full.
Chelsea though should get the win and they could do it convincingly if the players who are out to stake a claim put on a good show and complacency doesn’t creep in. It’s a huge chance for both Clubs to progress to the high levels of the competitions Quarter Finals which will give Chelsea another huge opportunity of picking up some major silverware this season under the admirable Antonio Conte, who has transformed this Chelsea side and could win the double in his first season in English football.