The Special One is looking for a trophy or two this season and the League Cup may fit the bill
After an imperious 2-0 win over Arsenal at the Emirates, Chelsea look well-placed for League Cup glory this season and for manager Jose Mourinho, success in the tournament could be about more than just football.
The Special One is aiming to make it ten straight seasons as a trophy-winning manager, with last season’s solitary Super Cup victory maintaining the Portuguese’s impressive record in delivering silverware at the very highest level.
And while other managers such as Arsene Wenger are happy to use the competition to blood in new stars, the sheer depth and quality of the Chelsea squad means that even a second-string selection could be enough to see off any of the Premier League’s elite.
The victory over the Gunners served as a fine example of this theory in action with two of the Stamford Bridge club’s current second-string providing the goals.
Cesar Azpilicueta may currently be being kept out of the first team by the imperious Branislav Ivanovic but the second scorer, Juan Mata, remains something of a puzzling case.
It seems bizarre, in truth, to think that the Blues’ former Player of the Year, could yet end up enjoying a periphery role this season, with the League Cup currently his main outlet and potentially the only stage for the Spaniard to impress his manager from.
There can be little doubt that Mourinho is keen to secure another cup though, with the 50-year-old rarely showing the same kind of disdain for the competition that is witnessed from other managers.
Yet domestic cup success has always been a hallmark of his career to date with trophies of this kind picked up as manager of Real Madrid as well as Inter Milan and Porto.
His first stint at Stamford Bridge saw the pattern continue with the FA Cup and League Cup trophy wins to his name.
And lest we forget last season’s efforts under Rafa Benitez, which ended at the semi-final stage with defeat over two legs to Swansea.
Given the rivalry between the pair, victory at Wembley next March is likely to be that much sweeter for Mourinho.