The Guardian, Dominic Fifield: “Those “psychological effects” to which Arsène Wenger had referred when considering the significance of this collision between the Premier League’s top two may now be afflicting his Arsenal squad rather than bolstering them. Chelsea crossed the capital to win this tie and a place in the League Cup quarter-finals with relative ease. They were more streetwise, more powerful and certainly cannier in key areas, their victory achieved with a goal in each half and plenty to spare. It all seemed ominously comfortable.”
The Independent, Sam Wallace: “Nine matches, five defeats and so the wait goes on for an Arsene Wenger team to beat one managed by Jose Mourinho. At least this season, the League Cup does not represent the only realistic hope that Arsenal have for a trophy. Wenger’s side are still top of the Premier League. They have still played some of the most exciting football in Europe this season. They were, in terms of individuals, the weaker of these two mid-week League Cup XIs before a ball was kicked. Yet even so, the result said much about the depth of Chelsea’s resources and the sheer bloody-mindedness of their manager to get a result in a tie that he has, at various points over the last few weeks, proclaimed to give up on.”
The Daily Telegraph, Henry Winter: “Jose Mourinho left with Mesut Özil’s shirt, and once again with Arsenal’s scalp. Mourinho is now undefeated in the last nine competitive meetings with Arsène Wenger and his Chelsea side progressed with little trouble to the Capital One Cup quarter-finals.”
The Official Chelsea FC Website: “Goals from Cesar Azpilicueta and Juan Mata ensure we celebrate Jose Mourinho’s 200th game as manager like so many, with a win, in the fourth round of the Capital One Cup. Our Spanish right-back struck his first Chelsea goal before the interval, capitalising on a short Carl Jenkinson back-pass to volley home from inside the box. That means we have had three new goalscorers in the space of 10 days, Azpilicueta joining Andre Schurrle and Samuel Eto’o in notching their first for the club. The lead was doubled three-quarters of the way through the match via the right boot of Mata, whose sweetly-struck shot whistled past Lukasz Fabianski for his first goal of the season. In the end, it was a fairly comfortable victory for the much-changed Blues, with our opponents offering little threat going forward. It was in this competition that Mourinho lifted his first trophy as Chelsea boss, and tonight’s victory means we are still on course to emulate that feat nine years later.”
Goals and highlights
Steve Holland and Arsene Wenger’s reaction
Holland: “Jose asked when he addressed the players before tonight’s game to be given selection problems for the game this coming weekend.
“He wants headaches and he wants everyone to be playing well when given the chance, and that was the case tonight, the players responded to that.
“It has been a satisfying three days. The objective at Chelsea is always to compete in all the competitions, and given that we had to play this with only one day between the games, and it gave us no option than to use the full squad, and every player in the squad deserves great credit for their performance in the last three days.
“Arsenal and Man City will be competing for major honours this season and to win both games is particularly satisfying, and we are in a good place at the moment.”
Wenger: “I think it was a very tight game that was decided on one or two mistakes but overall we cannot play all the games with the same players, at the some stage you have to rotate. No, that’s not a regret overall – there’s a lot of positives in the game, there is as well negatives because we lost it and that we repeated a little bit giving the first goal away. In the big games you give yourselves a mountain to climb, especially when you play against a team who defends well and is good on the counter-attacks. But overall it was a game played at a lot of pace where the players put the effort in.”
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