Chelsea eye comeback against Swansea in League Cup semi-final

Chelsea must draw on spirit of last season's Champions League success to overturn first-leg deficit and claim place at Wembley, says defender

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 23 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 23 January, 2013, 4:39am


Chelsea defender Gary Cahill has urged his team to draw on the memory of their Champions League success last season when they take on Swansea in the second leg of their English League Cup semi-final tonight.

Rafael Benitez's side travel to the Liberty Stadium trailing 2-0 from the first leg at Stamford Bridge two weeks ago, and face a daunting task if they are to clinch a place in the Wembley final.

However, the Blues will head to south Wales lifted by the 2-1 weekend win over Arsenal, which centre-back Cahill claims has revived the club's Premier League title ambitions.

The England international believes Chelsea's performances in last season's European campaign, which climaxed with a penalty shoot-out win in the final against Bayern Munich at the German club's own ground, proved the west London club are capable of defying the odds when silverware is at stake.

"It's not beyond us," Cahill said. "We have done it before in the Champions League.

"It's going to be tough because it's a hard place to go," he added. "The key is getting the first goal. If we get it, then it will be a nervous night for them. That's what we're aiming to do."

Chelsea's away form under interim manager Benitez has been formidable, and they will confront Michael Laudrup's side on the back of six successive domestic victories on their travels. And Cahill is confident that the Blues can now embark on a run that will take them closer to the Premier League's top two, Manchester United and Manchester City, as well as inspire success in the cup competitions.

"Yes, we are looking at the Manchester clubs," he said.

"It has been frustrating, because there have been many times this season where we have nearly got ourselves back involved [in the title race] and then let it slip," said the 27-year-old. "But we are more than capable of putting a run together and winning nine out of 10 games. That's what we need to aim for and see where it takes us.

"We have got to make sure we are in one of the spots for the Champions League," he added. "We also have the cup competitions, and we want to go as far as we possibly can in them."

However, Cahill warned that fatigue could count against the Blues, saying: "At the minute, it's impossible to feel 100 per cent fresh. It is difficult, but we can't use it as an excuse."

David Luiz returns to the squad after missing the Arsenal game with an ankle problem, but doubts remain about captain John Terry's match fitness.