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Courtois expects to start FA Cup final, and expects to stop Romelu Lukaku

The Chelsea goalkeeper wants to win the trophy “for the fans and the club”

Southampton v Chelsea - Premier League Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images

What’s done is done. Chelsea have failed to qualify for the Champions League for the second time in three seasons and put in the worst performance of the season itself on Sunday to confirm that. Antonio Conte is on his way out, and a busy and crucial summer, full of many potential changes and important developments awaits.

But before all that, we have one more thing to care of, the FA Cup final. A modicum of redemption awaits, possibly, for all the players, as Courtois reveals.

“Everybody is looking forward now to the Cup final. We know Sunday [when Chelsea lost 3-0 away to Newcastle] was not a good game but we knew after Wednesday [when Chelsea drew 1-1 at home to Huddersfield], it’d be difficult to even have a chance and I don’t think we turned up in the right way at Newcastle.”

“Obviously they wanted to finish their season well in front of their fans... we didn’t do our best. We had to apologise to our fans about that and hope that on Saturday we can play a good game and win.”

Despite those back-to-back poor efforts, Courtois doesn’t think Chelsea are underdogs for Saturday’s final. And even though there’s plenty of turmoil just waiting to bubble to the surface, he thinks the squad can keep it together, find the proper motivation and win a trophy to finish the season on a good note.

“No [Chelsea are not underdogs]. I think finals are always 50-50. Obviously Manchester [United] finished second this season so maybe in terms of Premier League they were higher than us but I think the Cup is a different competition.”

“Finals are always 50-50, last year we were the clear favourites to win it and we lost. In the final, everything can happen. I hope we can turn up the right way.”

-Thibaut Courtois; source: London Evening Standard

On a more personal note, Courtois also expects to the start the final, even though his backup, Willy Caballero is the one who’s gotten us this far in the competition. Conte has preferred to switch to Courtois in the latter stages however (in both this year’s League Cup and last year’s FA Cup runs, for example), so the Chelsea’s no.1’s expectation is probably firmly founded.

“I have heard that it is the intention to let me play.”

-Thibaut Courtois; source: HLN via Inside Futbol

Plus, maybe he can use some inside information to stop Lukaku this time? Just keep those legs closed, Thibaut!

“He has no more secrets for me, everyone knows him, he is powerful, fast, has a good shot, is good with the head, I know his qualities and faults. To know where he is going to shoot.”

-Thibaut Courtois; source: DH via Inside Futbol

Courtois will be entering the final year of his contract with the Blues this summer, and that’s just one of the many aforementioned concerns that will need to be addressed before next season.

But for now, all eyes on Saturday.

“I think almost everyone is the same here in the dressing room, we have a big motivation to win. And especially because we don’t have a trophy this season. We want to win.”

“It’s not about the manager, we want to win for the fans and the club. If you want to win trophies, firstly, it’s for the fans. They come there every week to support you. We are ready for it.”

-Thibaut Courtois; source: London Evening Standard

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