Back to Seville!
Chelsea travel back to Seville for Tuesday nights Champions League Quarter-Final 2nd leg against FC Porto. It will be considered as a home tie for Chelsea. Chelsea go into this game with a 2 goal lead having put 2 past FC Porto last Wednesday. Those 2 goals count as away goals so Sevilla have to score a minimum of 2 without reply to take the game to extra time. Porto won their game at the weekend and have nothing to lose going into this game.
Chelsea go into this 2nd leg having won 1-4 at Crystal Palace during the weekend. It was the first time Chelsea score 3 or more goals under Tuchel and it was a sight for sore eyes. It’s not that the football has been bad, the football has been great but the attack had yet to click and on Saturday click it did. The way Havertz combined with Mount and Pulisic up front was a joy to watch while Hudson-Odoi, and Chilwell provided a threat from the wings. It was complete attacking performance and we should have score way more. Against Porto the game will be tough, Porto will come out fighting and Chelsea will have to suffer during certain moments of the game. The team cannot expect to dominate possession and create 20+ chances like they did against Palace. Very much like the 1st leg in this game we will have to stay solid and be clinical with the chances we get. The players will have to treat this game like a one off and so forget about any advantage they might have from the 1st leg.
Chelsea Team Preview
Tuchel has a fully fit squad to select from. Mendy will start in goal with Azpilicueta, Silva, and Rudiger probably starting at the back. Zouma played well but Silva has had a rest and will be crucial in this Champions League game even though Christensen started ahead of him in the 1st leg. Reece James should return as the right wing back while Chilwell should continue as the left wing back. Jorginho and Kovacic will probably continue on as the midfield duo with Kante coming off the bench. Up front is where it gets tricky for Tuchel. Does he stick with Mount, Pulisic and Havertz who were scintillating against Palace or does he rotate given that we play City on Saturday in the FA Cup Semi-Final. I think I will stick with the same front three. They played well against a low block and the passing was fluid. The three of them are also playing with confidence as well. Ziyech, Werner, Giroud, Abraham, Hudson-Odoi are all luxuries available from the bench for Tuchel and with 5 subs there is plenty of chance to rest players if we get the job done early. I say the ideal situation would be to start well, take our chances and then give a rest to the front three but subbing them off.
FC Porto Team Preview
FC Porto have Taremi and Oliveira back available after suspension. The two of them are the lethal goal scorers in the team and Chelsea will have to be vigilant. Oliveira may start from the bench but Taremi should be fit enough to start from the beginning. Marega was also rested during the weekend so he should be fit to play while the likes of Corona and Otavio provide a threat from out wide. The rest of the team should be similar to the 1st leg and Pepe will be that rock at the heart of their defence.
Starting XI Prediction
It’s a big game for Tuchel and Chelsea. Like Tuchel said in the pre match conference though he is not at Chelsea to win trophies in 2 or 3 seasons, “the time is now” he said. COME ON CHELSEA!!!