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Swindon Town vs. Chelsea, League Cup: Squad news, TV & streaming information, preview

Jamie McDonald

Back to winning ways then as the fixtures come thick and fast.  Not that we would have it any other way.

Up next, it's the League Cup, which Mourinho used as a springboard for Premier League-winning ways the first time around.  And although it's not too high on the ladder of priorities (4th or 5th, probably), I wouldn't say no to another successful (minor) cup campaign like that.  Especially since José sounds more than ready to actually use the second-choice and youth players in it, unlikely some of his predecessors.

Date/Time: Tuesday, September 24, 2013, 19:45 BST; 2:45pm EDT; 12:15am IST (next day)

Venue/Location: County Ground, Swindon, England

Forecast: Unseasonably warm daytime temperatures (22°C!) bode well for a pleasant night of football

On TV: Sky Sports 2 (UK); beIN Sport (USA); Ten Action (India)

Online: Sky Go (UK); beIN Sport Play (USA)

Chelsea squad news: The squad is in good health although Mourinho has pretty much already picked his starting lineup in the name of rotation and keeping everybody fresh and involved.  Most importantly, that means that both Juan Mata and David Luiz will get to put their mistakes from Basel behind them.  Hopefully.

In further positive development, Lewis Baker did not travel with Chelsea U21 to Everton today and should thus be the one youth player to be possibly involved tomorrow as per Steve Holland.  The ideal scenario for the 18-year-old budding star is perhaps a seat on the bench and a substitute appearance once Chelsea put the hosts out of sight.  It would be richly deserved; I'm hard-pressed to think of an academy player who has shown more improvement than Baker over the last two years.  A truly two-footed, supremely confident midfielder who is capable of set pieces on the order of Juan Mata or Kevin De Bruyne all the while scoring more than his fair-share of goals (14 in 35 in all competitions last season), Baker has a bright future.

Swindon Town squad news: Our brothers in sponsorship arms (Samsung) finished sixth in League One, good enough for the promotion playoffs although not much further than that as they fell to Brentford on penalty kicks in the semifinals.  And if a mention of Brentford that isn't enough to remind you of how annoying these cups can be sometimes, let's not forget that Swindon came back from two down to almost draw with Aston Villa in last season's League Cup 4th round (Benteke saved the day for the Villains in the 90th minute) after eliminating Stoke City a couple rounds previous.  They're up to similar antics this season, booting QPR out of the competition (at Loftus Road!) in the last round.

Our brothers in managerial upheaval arms as well (Paolo Di Canio, Kevin MacDonald, and now Mark Cooper) are off to an indifferent start in eleventh place with just eleven points from the first eight games.  Leading scorer Ryan Mason is a Spurs loanee (along with two others), while ex-Newcastle and England U19 prospect Nile Ranger is finding League One a bit easier to score in than the Premier League.

With a sold out stadium behind them, Swindon will be looking to insert themselves into the whole magic of the cup narrative.

View from the enemy: There's a glaring, Swindon-sized gap in SB Nation's soccer coverage.  Fortunately, there is Swoodilypoopers.

Previously: It's been almost 20 years since we last met Swindon Town, during their one and only Premier League season (during which they set a record for goals conceded that still stands) and in a time when Chelsea were capable of finishing 14th (and were led by ex-Swindon manager Glenn Hoddle).  Dennis Wise and Gavin Peacock scored in that 2-0 victory in front of just 11,180 spectators.  Overall, the teams have met thirteen times with Chelsea failing to win just four times.

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