Friday 18 January 2019

Cahill braced for 'spicy' Spurs clash

Chelsea’s Gary Cahill. Pic: PA
Chelsea’s Gary Cahill. Pic: PA

Gary Cahill anticipates another "spicy" game with Tottenham in the FA Cup semi-final.

Chelsea overcame Jose Mourinho's Manchester United 1-0 in a bad-tempered quarter-final on Monday night as the Blues progressed to Wembley.

Ander Herrera was sent off for United and N'Golo Kante scored the only goal to keep alive hopes of a Premier League and FA Cup double in Antonio Conte's first season as Chelsea boss.

Tottenham and Chelsea have one Premier League win apiece this season, while a feisty draw at Stamford Bridge last term ended Spurs' title bid. Manchester City and Arsenal meet in the other semi-final.

Cahill said: "They made it tough. Jose had a tactical plan from the off, which made it difficult early on.

"The sending off swung it in our favour. Delighted we're through and a trip to Wembley, so looking forward to that.

"It's going to be a spicy game, as it always is against Tottenham."

United won the trophy last term under Louis van Gaal before Mourinho's appointment as boss, but the holders are out as Chelsea overcame their aggressive approach.

Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois told the London Evening Standard: "They tried to get in our mind maybe by fouling and kicking to destabilise us. These are the mind games they try to play - they get it from their manager - but we didn't fall into that trap.

"It was the style of Mourinho - and Herrera paid the price for his team-mates because Jones just before had made the fifth foul on Eden.

"We played our game, we did it our way, like we have for the last six months or so, and we did it well."

Kante scored his second Chelsea goal. The first came in October's 4-0 Premier League win over United. "He had a tremendous game again," added Cahill, Chelsea's on-field captain with John Terry out of favour.

"He gets credit for the dirty work he does, the energy he has and how he breaks up play.

"But, in training, he's a good finisher." Conte added: "My expectations about him are also to score. I think he likes to play against United and to score the goal."

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