Thibaut Courtois has apparently failed his fitness test ahead of tonight’s League Cup semifinal second leg clash against Arsenal at the Emirates. Courtois had been sidelined with an ankle injury since last week, and while he had returned to training and looked set to return to match action, Antonio Conte has decided against risking his first-choice goalkeeper.
Thus reports the ever-reliable Kristof Terreur of Belgium’s HLN.
❌ out— Kristof Terreur (@HLNinEngeland) January 24, 2018
Backup goalkeeper Wilfredo Caballero, fresh off his clean sheet against Brighton & Hove Albion in his first Premier League appearance for Chelsea, is thus set for his third consecutive start.
While he’s made a habit of conceding late goals (not necessarily his fault) and is good for at least one, let’s say, “adventurous” play per game, the 36-year-old former Manchester City backup has been solid enough when called upon. He also stepped up big in the penalty kick shootout against Norwich City in the FA Cup, saving the Canaries’ first effort as Chelsea advanced to the fourth round.
Caballero won the League Cup with City two years ago, starting both legs of the semifinal and the final as well, so the veteran should be able to handle himself tonight. With both teams looking to get to Wembley, he’s going to have to.