Chelsea’s development squad conclude the group stage of the EFL Trophy away at Bristol Rovers this evening (Wednesday), kick-off is 6pm.
The young Blues will battle for a place in the knockout stages at the Memorial Ground and here we preview the action as we make the trip to the South West...
How to follow and kick-off time
As it stands
We sit fourth in the group, level on two points with tonight's opponents ahead of the first whistle. Walsall and Oxford United have already played their group games and, with one team guaranteed at least two points from tonight's tie courtesy of the bonus point penalty shootout in the event of a draw, Walsall on three points are already eliminated from the competition. The winner tonight will progress into the knockout stage with group winners Oxford.
Competition so far
The Gas, who parted company with manager Ben Garner following a 4-1 home defeat to Fleetwood Town in League One at the weekend, have drawn their two games against Walsall and Oxford in 90 minutes before losing out on an extra point in a penalty shootout on both occasions.
Chelsea’s first game back in September was a narrow defeat at Oxford United before we picked up our two points at Walsall following an entertaining penalty shootout at The Banks's Stadium.
Bristol Rovers sit 18th in League One and have just one win in their last five games. However, prior to their loss to Fleetwood on Saturday afternoon, they moved into the second round of this year’s FA Cup by beating Walsall 2-1.
There is currently a small Chelsea Academy contingent at Bristol Rovers; former Academy youngsters Zain Westbrooke and Josh Grant have 25 appearances between them this term. Grant only left Chelsea at the end of last season after 12 years in the youth ranks and was joined by Luke McCormick earlier this term, who made the loan move to the Memorial Ground.
Former Academy coach Jack Mesure made his first step into senior football at the beginning of the season, taking up the assistant maager's role at The Memorial Stadium.
We met in the group stage of this competition last season, with a Charlie Brown opener after 30 minutes cancelled out by a second-half home double. Victor Adeboyejo and Liam Sercombe rescued the points for Rovers after they piled the pressure on our youngsters, having been behind at the break.
Bristol Rovers finished top of the group in the last campaign and we qualified in second place, just one point off first place.
You can watch the game live via the iFollow platform on bristolrovers.co.uk at a cost of £10, or follow the action with updates on our official @chelseafc Twitter.