That backfired, with Chelsea suffering a 1-0 defeat that has put their top four hopes in jeopardy.
But Tuchel believes Kante will be vital for the double-header against Leicester – first in the Cup final and then in Tuesday’s crucial Premier League match, which could have a major say Champions League-qualification.
Kovacic was expected to be back for the first time in over a month after suffering a hamstring strain, but is not included - with Tammy Abraham also left out of the squad.
In attack, Timo Werner leads the line with Hakim Ziyech and Mason Mount in support, while Kai Havertz’s poor finishing against Arsenal sees him among the substitutes.
Chelsea XI: Arrizabalaga, Azpilicueta, Thiago Silva, Rudiger, James, Kante, Jorginho, Alonso, Ziyech, Mount, Werner
Subs: Pulisic, Zouma, Mendy, Giroud, Hudson-Odoi, Chilwell, Gilmour, Havertz, Emerson Palmieri