A number of players who helped Chelsea to a 4-2 win the last time we met in the FA Cup semi-final in April have either left or are injured or suspended, with both Gary Cahill and Cesc Fabregas sent off in their Premier League opener against Burnley.
“We’re focusing on trying to improve ourselves,” the manager told us after training on Friday. “It’s true that maybe Chelsea will miss some players, but they have a great squad and great players and it will be a very tough game.”
Our season at ‘home’ at Wembley is another talking point. “We need to make Wembley home and to feel how we felt at White Hart Lane,” stated Mauricio. “That’s a big challenge for us but no excuse if we don’t achieve all we want.”
The players are in high spirits – last weekend’s opening day win at Newcastle made it 17 wins out of 21 matches in the Premier League in 2017 – and there could hardly be a bigger game to get things started in our season at Wembley Stadium, connected by EE.
Mauricio added: “It’s a massive game for us and to start the season against Chelsea at Wembley is a huge motivation for us and for our fans.
“We’re excited, we’re confident and now we need to apply everything and try to win. That’s the challenge.”