Chelsea begin their cup sojourn in the new season with a second round match against Bristol Rovers in the newly-christened EFL Cup, formerly known as the League Cup, on Tuesday.
The Blues have started well in the Premier League this season, with Antonio Conte guiding his team to two wins in two matches. Having done what was required, without being spectacular, Chelsea will now be keen to get the business done against the League One side.
There was much excitement once Conte was named as the manager, with the fans, obviously, expecting big things from the man who coached Italy so well in Euro 2016. Chelsea have been able to get the better of two London teams – West Ham and Watford – in the first two games of the season so far, and both have been via late goals.
Conte will hope the match against Bristol Rovers is a lot more serene, and it will be interesting to see how the Italian treats this tournament – whether he will keep his first-team players in the lineup or if he will ring in the changes.
"Losing always leaves sad things in you," Conte said after the narrow win over Watford, when Diego Costa, after controversially staying on the pitch for the second straight game, struck a late winner for the second consecutive match. "You can lose your confidence and for this reason it is important to win these two games because you can continue to trust in the work and raise the confidence of the players.
"For these reasons it was important to start in the right way for all. Now we must continue and we have a great chance to continue in the next game at home."
Costa will again be the cynosure, for the right or wrong reasons, and it would not be a surprise if the Spain international were to start on the bench, with Michy Batshuayi getting a chance up front. Cesc Fabregas is another pushing for a place in the starting XI, and such is Chelsea's squad strength that Conte can afford to rest a fair few of his first-choice players.
For Bristol Rovers, a team that were non-league a couple of years ago, this is a nothing-to-lose game. And that can, sometimes, be the best thing, because it takes the pressure of the players and they can just express themselves, without worrying too much about making mistakes or the end result.
Where to Watch Live
The Chelsea vs Bristol Rovers EFL Cup match is scheduled for a 7.45 p.m. BST (12.15 a.m. IST) start. There will be no live TV coverage of the match, however, viewers across the world can listen to the action live online on Chelsea TV and Gas Player HD.