Sparked by a John Terry finish and a Tottenham own goal, Chelsea beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-0 in the Capital One Cup Final on Sunday at Wembley Stadium. Chelsea taking the 2015 League Cup Final was a bit of delayed revenge for a 2-1 loss the Blues suffered in their last final appearance against Tottenham in 2008 at Wembley.
The final started with Spurs in control. The first real chance of the match came on a Tottenham free kick in the 10th minute. Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen hit a hard-dipping free kick from just outside the box that rattled off the crossbar. It was nearly a goal and seemingly had Chelsea keeper Petr Cech beat. The kick was earned after a darting dribble by star Tottenham forward Harry Kane was ended with a foul by Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fàbregas.
Kane soon added another chance off of another long dribble. But once again no goal came of the opportunity, as Cech saved and held onto a Kane shot to the lower left corner. Tottenham perhaps had the better of the early play and certainly had more significant chances to take a lead.
José Mourinho's side were able to reverse fortunes toward the end of the half by scoring on their first shot on goal. Chelsea earned a free kick in the 45th minute toward the right corner of Tottenham’s defensive half. Chelsea forward Willian swung in a ball to the box that was dangerous and poorly cleared by the Spurs defense. Blues defender Terry found the bouncing rebound and was wide open to power a shot into the back of the net to go up 1-0 in the 45th minute. Chelsea nearly added another first half goal on a corner kick in extra time after defensive midfielder (and usual center back) Gary Cahill headed a cross beautifully toward the corner of the net. Tottenham keeper Hugo Lloris made a wonderful diving save to keep the score at 1-0 to end the half. Spurs controlled 60 percent of the possession in the first half with promising scoring chances, and had to be disappointed to go into the break down a goal.
The second half almost started with an amazing score by Fàbregas. The Spaniard struck a bicycle kick in the 48th minute from around the top of the box that Lloris was just barely able to knock away. Fàbregas showed a bit of creativity on a ball that was hanging up in the air.
Chelsea soon added a second goal despite the Lloris save on Fàbregas’ attempt. Striker Diego Costa helped put the Blues up 2-0 on a quick dribble down the left side. Costa took a shot (or perhaps a cross) that deflected off Tottenham's Kyle Walker, changing the ball’s course and beating Lloris to the near post to put Chelsea up 2-0 in the 56th minute. Walker stuck his leg out to try and block Costa's attempt but the deflection ended up costing his team. It was officially ruled an own goal but the play was sparked by Costa taking a chance.
Tottenham, following the second Chelsea goal, began to push forward to try to make the final competitive. The game opened up as Spurs threw attackers forward and Chelsea tried to keep the status quo. Mauricio Pochettino's side left themselves vulnerable to counter-attacks in their deperation, making for an exciting, fast-paced finish to the match. Spurs kept attacking while Chelsea kept watching the seconds tick by. The game ended and Chelsea were still up 2-0 and were crowned champions of the Capital One Cup.
Chelsea were without midfielder Nemanja Matic due to a two-game suspension for his retaliation to a tackle by Burnley’s Ashley Barnes last weekend. Cahill started in his place as usual replacement John Obi Mikel was unavailable because of injury. Tottenham had been looking to add another Cup trophy to the club's record book. Spurs' last major trophy was the League Cup victory over Chelsea in 2008.
Chelsea move on to a league match at West Ham on Wednesday. The Blues also have a March 11 Champions League second-leg match against Paris Saint-Germain upcoming. The aggregate score of that matchup is 1-1. The Blues are also in first place in the Premier League and are set up to have a truly special year. Tottenham play next on Wednesday when they will host Swansea in a league match.