Real Madrid and Chelsea reconvene on Tuesday to play out the second leg of their Champions League quarter-final tie.
Los Blancos head into the clash holding the significant upper hand, having earned a 3-1 victory at Stamford Bridge last week. That massive victory has been part of an importantly reinvigorating run of form for Carlo Ancelotti’s side, in which La Liga victories over Celta Vigo and Getafe respectively have also helped heal the wounds of their 4-0 Clasico defeat prior to the international break.
Thomas Tuchel’s men are also healing, following the first-leg loss and a 4-1 thrashing by Brentford in a calamitous week for the Blues. Since then, however, Chelsea have got back to winning ways with a 6-0 mauling of Southampton at the weekend – teeing up an intriguing clash between these heavyweights.
Here’s 90min’s preview for this one.
When is kick off? Tuesday 12 April, 20:00 (GMT)
Where is it being played? Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid
What TV channel is it on? BT Sport 2 (UK), Paramount+ (US)
Highlights? BT Sport YouTube channel
Who’s the referee? Szymon Marciniak
Eder Militao was fit to play at the weekend despite being withdrawn with a knock at Chelsea last week, although the Brazilian will be out of contention for this one through suspension.
Meanwhile, former Blue Eden Hazard remains in the treatment room alongside Luka Jovic, while Isco likely won’t be involved despite nearing a comeback from a back issue.
Tuchel has a similar number of injury concerns with Ben Chilwell and Callum Hudson-Odoi certain to be absent from proceedings.
Elsewhere, Romelu Lukaku is a doubt to feature after missing the victory over Southampton with pain to the Achilles, while Cesar Azpilicueta likely won’t be available after testing positive for Covid-19 on Friday.
In what is a mammoth occasion for both sides, the onus is well and truly on the visitors.
Chelsea simply have to score goals in Madrid and, given what they did to Southampton on Saturday, you wouldn’t bet against them doing so – especially with Militao unavailable. Having said that, Real Madrid also boast a quite special attacking threat and, with their visitors desperate to find the back of the net, you’d expect them to exploit some gaps.
This should be a thoroughly thrilling affair for the neutral, and an almighty stressful one for supporters of either side. With both teams capable of hurting each other, we could get an entertaining draw that sees Los Blancos preogress.
Prediction: Real Madrid 2-2 Chelsea