Match Preview

Tottenham U23s vs Chelsea U23s preview: Ready for the challenge, live on the 5th Stand

Our development squad are back in Premier League 2 action this evening when they travel to take on London rivals Tottenham and you can watch the action live on the 5th Stand app.

As a preview to the action, we take a look at everything you need to know as the team return to the field for the first time this year.

When and where

Tonight’s fixture will be played at the Lamex Stadium, home to League Two Stevenage. Kick-off is 7pm.

How to watch live

The game will be broadcast live and for free on this website and the 5th Stand app tonight (Monday), with coverage starting at 6.55pm. You can also follow the action on our official @chelseafc Twitter.

Form

The Blues have been in good form, ending 2019 second in PL2 without a league defeat to their name in the current campagin. Henry Lawrence helped claim a point last time out on Merseyside where Liverpool held Andy Myers’ team to a draw in the final game of the year. A win tonight could take the Blues back to the top of the table, a point clear of Derby County, who would have played a game more than Chelsea.

From the dressing room

After opening his account earlier in the season with a stunning goal against Brighton at Stamford Bridge, Lawrence bagged his second of the league term against Liverpool - he has three goals in all competitions after notching away in the UEFA Youth League tie against Valencia in November.

Here, the 18-year-old reflects on his team's efforts in their last outing before looking forward to tonight's first London derby of 2020.

‘Liverpool was a tough game', said Lawrence. 'In the first half, there was a lot of pressing and running around and it continued towards the end of the game when we went down to 10 men, but even with the disadvantage we nearly got the winner.

‘I was delighted to get the equaliser but when you are playing for Chelsea, the aim is to win every game. In scoring the equaliser, you are happy but you just want to get the ball and try and get another one before the end.'

The development squad returned to training last week and are excited at the challenge that awaits from Spurs tonight.

‘We’ve had a little bit of a break but from the first day you get back into training, you want to get back into the habit of things as soon as possible so that the whole team is ready for a game situation,' Lawrence explained. 'We know Tottenham are a good team and it will be tough but I believe we are ready for the challenge.

‘Playing against a London rival always adds a little bit of excitement to the game. We want to go out there and prove just how good we are.’

The opposition

Tottenham currently occupy sixth place and are on 17 points, seven fewer than Chelsea in third. Spurs have had a mixed bag of results, recording big wins over Everton and Liverpool but falling to defeat against Arsenal and Manchester City most recently.

Team news

Myers will most likely be without 19-year-old Tariq Lamptey this evening, the rapid defender was handed his senior team debut by Frank Lampard in Chelsea’s 2-1 win over Arsenal on 29 December before making his debut bow at the Bridge as a 75th-minute susbstitue in yesterday’s FA Cup win over Nottingham Forest.

Marc Guehi and Billy Gilmour could feature as the Blues look to extend their unbeaten start to the campaign, both having appeared in the majority of development squad games and contributed to the good form of the team.

League table

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