Former Chelsea FC manager Jose Mourinho has said that the Blues should have the advantage over Arsenal in the Europa League, given they have the lesser pressure going into the game.
The Blues have already sealed their berth in next season’s Champions League after a third-place finish and they go into the midweek final with the prospect of winning silverware.
In comparison, the Gunners’ prospects of making the elite competition are entirely dependent on winning the Europa League and Mourinho appears to suggest that could offer the edge to the Blues.
Speaking to Sky Sports News, Mourinho said that his former employers could be regarded as the favourites, given they won’t be playing with the same pressure when compared to the Gunners.
“There is more pressure for Arsenal than for Chelsea because they play the entire season in a game,” he said. “There is a place in the Champions League, many millions … That is why they have more pressure.”
Chelsea have been hampered with key injuries to Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Antonio Rudiger and Callum Hudson-Odoi in the past month and the misery could be further added with N’Golo Kante deemed a huge doubt for the final.
However, the same can be said of the Gunners, who have been missing the likes of Hector Bellerin and Rob Holding for much of the season while they also won’t be able to bank on the services of Aaron Ramsey, who sustained a season-ending hamstring problem last month.
As such, the teams seem to be fairly balanced in terms of the injury setbacks through the season, but it will be interesting to see whether the Blues can get the better of the Gunners, which has been a rare case in the past two years.