How Chelsea and Actual Madrid may line up within the UCL
It’s the biggest game of the season so far for Chelsea and Real Madrid and they are both eager to win.
Chelsea have made great strides under Thomas Tuchel, but will that be enough to beat the perennial winners in Zinedine Zidane’s squad?
Everything will be revealed on Wednesday evening, but how will each team position themselves?
The hosts will likely start similarly to the first leg, where they came out of the air and probably should have scored more than one goal.
In terms of goalkeeping position, it will be Edouard Mendy again between the sticks. Kepa Arrizabalaga may be the cup goalkeeper, but it is Mendy who is the first choice and will start in this crucial game.
Before him, expect Antonio Rüdiger to recover from the blow that put him off the 2-0 Premier League win against Fulham and played alongside Thiago Silva and Andreas Christensen.
Denmark international Christensen has shown an exceptional performance on the right side of the last three and appears to have ousted club captain Cesar Azpilicueta for this slot.
The captain will most likely play as the right full-back, as in the first leg, with Reece James falling on the bench.
Mateo Kovacic still has a hamstring injury and while Billy Gilmour started this weekend it will be N’Golo Kante and Jorginho in the middle of the park.
Kai Havertz scored a double against Fulham, but after Mason Mount guaranteed a start and Christian Pulisic scored against the Spanish giants last week, there could be an exchange of fire between Havertz and Timo Werner, which the former RB Leipzig would win.
He may have missed a chance with guilt last week, but Werner’s pace and threat may be too important to ignore.
Real Madrid have played this game after an important 2-0 win over Osasuna in the battle for the La Liga title.
Raphael Varane suffered an injury in the game and joins Daniel Carvajal and Lucas Vazquez on the treatment table.
However, the good news for Madrid is that captain Sergio Ramos is back and ready to go.
He will partner with Eder Militao, with Zidane most likely sticking to a back four after his experiment with a back three didn’t really pay off in the first leg.
Marcelo is out, but Ferland Mendy returns. Alvaro Odriozola is the top candidate who starts on the right.
The proven midfield three of Casemiro, Toni Kroos and Luka Modric will be there again, with a 4-3-3 for Zidane.
Before them, Eden Hazard could face his previous club, with Vinicius Junior moving to the right.
First leg goalscorer Karim Benzema will start at the top and score his 29th goal in all competitions this season.