Some fallout from Chelsea's 1-0 defeat against Corinthian's in FIFA's pet sideshow: The Blues will be without centre back Gary Cahill after seeing him red carded against the Brazilians in the late stages of the match.
Gary Cahill red card was for kicking at Emerson after he'd been whacked in the face. Suspended for one game: Leeds United on Wednesday.— Dan Levene (@BluesChronicle) December 16, 2012
While it's good that we don't have a game of any particular import coming up -- missing Leeds in the Capital One Cup isn't the end of the world* in and of itself -- it's going to be pretty interesting with Chelsea's injury and suspension list. While Frank Lampard is back and starting, Rafa Benitez will have John Obi Mikel, Ramires and Cahill all suspended with Oriol Romeu out injured. I don't know whether or not John Terry will be fit by midweek, but seems unlikely.
*Although LUFC at Elland Road is probably a more difficult match than Corinthians on neutral ground.
And that means that it's thoroughly unclear who will be played in midfield. Up until the Cahill red, the obvious answer was David Luiz, but with Terry out he'll be required at centre back. Other than that, Chelsea have no pivot options really worthy of the name in the first squad. Oscar and Lampard? That midfield would get overrun in a heartbeat.
It's an interesting problem for Benitez to solve, at any rate, and not one the manager will be particularly happy with.