Chelsea face Manchester United in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday and with much-changed sides expected to be on display, Andy Schooler is taking a chance on a 7/1 shot.
Chelsea v Manchester United
Wednesday, 20:05
Live on Sky Sports Main Event
These two met on the opening day of the Premier League season and things looked very different to how they are now.
Manchester United triumphed 4-0 back in August and while the scoreline flattered them, it was an impressive start to the campaign and a miserable one to the Frank Lampard era at Chelsea.
Since then, it's been a long, hard struggle for United but Chelsea have undoubtedly shown there is much to like about their new-look side, packed with young talent.
The Blues head into this last-16 tie on a seven-game winning run in all competitions, one which began with a 7-1 demolition of Grimsby in the last round of this League Cup.

Encouraging signs for United

On the same night, United were scraping past Rochdale on penalties at Old Trafford. It was a result which summed up the lethargy at Old Trafford but there have been definite signs since the international break that they are emerging from their slump.
They held league leaders Liverpool with only a late equaliser denying them all three points and followed that up by ending their away drought, first in the Europa League at Partizan Belgrade and then domestically with a 3-1 victory at Norwich.
The return to fitness of Anthony Martial appears to have made a difference, while Marcus Rashford has also performed well with the Frenchman back in the side to aid him up front.
They will also head into this game knowing they are unbeaten in their last four against Chelsea, including a win here in the FA Cup last season.
Of course, the problem with the Carabao Cup from a punter's perspective is you can never be sure who is going to make the starting XI.

Visitors tempting - but team news vital

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer must be tempted to name a strong side and maintain the positive momentum of the past couple of weeks. If he does, quotes of 4.20 about the Red Devils winning the game will be quickly snapped up. However, it seems more likely that Rashford, Martial and a handful of others will be left out with a trip to Bournemouth to come on Saturday lunchtime.
Chelsea, with home games against Watford and Ajax to come in the next week, will also likely make several changes. Billy Gilmour and Marc Guehi started against Grimsby but aside from that it was still a very recognisable ream with the likes of Marcos AlonsoCallum Hudson-Odoi and Michy Batshuayi all included.
Several regular first-teamers also made the bench, albeit they weren't needed.

Goals seem likely

I can't be backing Chelsea at 1.97 without seeing the teams though. For the record, the draw is a 3.70 shot.
In terms of the goal markets, over 2.5 has generally been the way to go with Chelsea and that's at 1.91 here. Both teams to score is 1.75.
It wouldn't be difficult to make a case for either option but the uncertainty over the line-ups points me away from something so short.

Punt on Pedro

Instead I'll happily take a punt on Pedro opening the scoring.
The Spaniard is a player who seems likely to start. His chances have been limited of late but he made the XI against Grimsby and this looks an ideal opportunity for Lampard to keep him very much involved with a flourishing squad.
Lampard spoke about Willian's recent workload after the weekend win at Burnley so it's not hard to envisage Pedro slotting in on the right of the attack, a position from which he scored 13 goals last season.
Nine of those came at Stamford Bridge and significantly seven of the nine were the first goal. He's 8.20 to net the opener here and that is tempting.
With Luke Shaw out injured, that side of the pitch has been a bit of a weakness for United with Ashley Young filling in as best he can. He's never been a natural defender though and often looks vulnerable.
Pedro scored in that game against Grimsby from the penalty spot so he may well have that added responsibility - and chance of scoring - in this one too if regular taker Jorginho is again left out.

Opta fact

Manchester United have won six of their last seven League Cup matches against Premier League opposition (L1), including a 3-2 victory in the final against Southampton in 2016/17.

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