The Kepa vs. Sarri incident is dominating the post-match storylines after Chelsea’s penalty shootout loss to Manchester City in the League Cup final, but it’s likely that the more important thing from the 120 minutes of football on display at Wembley last night will actually be Chelsea’s willingness to adapt and adopt a more pragmatic approach.
Maurizio Sarri spoke about this briefly in his post-match press conference, as did Antonio Rüdiger in his interview with Chelsea TV.
“That was key, to be organized. We went to the Etihad, going press press press, but that didn’t work. Maybe Guardiola was expecting that [again] today, but we came up with the same [plan] as at Stamford Bridge when we beat them. Sometimes we have to adapt. This strategy, this tactic, today, against this team, was the right thing to do.”
Chelsea of course still lost in the end, but not only was the scoreline much closer than most were expecting, Chelsea’s determination and fight was at or near season-high levels as well. And that’s something we can take forward with us, even if City are the ones taking the trophy home.
“Defensively, we tried our best — we did well. Maybe we could’ve done a bit more in attack, but we came with a good resolve. At the end of the day, penalties are 50-50; we were unlucky.
“Thank you to the supporters. They were behind us, cheering with us, that’s some very very important.
“Now we can focus on two things, the league and the Europa League. We just need to recover well and go in with a good mindset to this derby we are playing [on Wednesday].”
-Antonio Rüdiger; source: Chelsea TV
Spurs at the Bridge. Should be another big day for drama, and hopefully three points for the Blues.