Real Madrid set out for revenge at Stamford Bridge against Chelsea

(Football news) Real Madrid and Chelsea will replay the semi final of last season's Champions League in the quarter finals of this season. Chelsea won 3-1 on aggregate last season but this season is a little different as there is no away goals rule and the first leg is at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea are the defending champions and are looking to become only the 2nd team to win back to back UCLs. Ironically, the only team that has done that is Real Madrid. Carlo Ancelotti who was out with COVID-19 has now tested negative and will be on the touchline after missing the last game against Celta Vigo.

Los Blancos have a hefty lead at the top of the La Liga table but their performance has dropped in the past month or so. They comfortably finished top of their group in the UCL before getting an emphatic win over PSG in the Round of 16 despite being 2-0 down with just 45 minutes left to play. Chelsea on the other hand finished 2nd in their group behind Juventus. They defeated Lille 4-1 on aggregate in the Round of 16. Chelsea are currently 3rd on the Premier League table with the title out of reach.

Real Madrid will be without Eden Hazard, Isco and Luka Jovic while Ben Chilwell and Callum Hudson-Odio are unavailable for Chelsea. Real Madrid's midfield have the ability to control the game but as seen last season, they can find it difficult to keep up with Chelsea's tempo which is why Ancelotti may start Fede Valverde to get some extra energy and fuel the pressing. Another big decision would be the right wing position which is the only place that does not have a guaranteed starter. The choice is between Rodrygo, Marco Asensio and Fede Valverde. Mateo Kovacic could be the key for Chelsea given his spell at Real Madrid. It will also be interesting to see what system Thomas Tuchel goes with and whether he starts Romelu Lukaku and/or Timo Werner up front. It goes without saying that Karim Benzema will be the main man for Real Madrid and he will need support from Vinicius Jr who has had a few underwhelming games in what has been a fantastic season.

Real Madrid are not in the best of form as they lost 4-0 at home to Barcelona and needed 3 penalties to defeat Celta Vigo on the weekend. After winning 12 out of 13 games in all competitions, Chelsea lost 4-1 away against Brentford in what was a disastrous performance. The match will be Real Madrid's class and experience against Chelsea's tempo and energy. The last round was another example of what Real Madrid are capable of at big UCL nights at the Bernabéu, hence Chelsea would be very keen to go to Madrid with a lead.

Also read: Liverpool get a comfortable 3-1 win away at Benfica


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