Chelsea take on Barcelona in the second leg of the Champions League round of 16 at the Camp Nou in midweek.
The Blues managed to restrict Barcelona to a scoreline of 1-1 and it was undoubtedly a good result for Antonio Conte – given the fact that Chelsea limited the Catalans to a single away goal. But the second leg will be a totally different ball game and Chelsea just cannot sit back and keep defending. We take a look at Chelsea’s predicted line up vs Barcelona.
CHELSEA TEAM NEWS:
Even though the Stamford Bridge outfit needs to win this encounter in order to gain entry to the Quarterfinals but we think that Conte will not set up his team keeping an attacking mindset. He will go with the same formation that took the field in the field leg hoping to hit the Catalans on the counter.
The back will be the same that played against Manchester City last weekend. Cahill started this weekend’s game against Crystal Palace but will drop to the bench to make way for Antonio Rudiger who along with Azpilicueta and Christensen will back up the back line.
David Zappacosta started the Palace game as the right wing-back but he will be replaced by Victor Moses in midweek while Marcos Alonso will play as the left wing-back.
Conte played with N’Golo Kante and Danny Drinkwater in central midfield for the City game and it proved to be a very bad move as Chelsea lost all the creativity in midfield. The Italian will surely bring back Cesc Fabregas to partner Kante.
Alvaro Morata might find himself on the bench once again as Antonio Conte has hinted that he might opt to play Eden Hazard as a false nine. If Morata does not find himself in the starting line up then both Pedro and Willian will play on either flank.
CHELSEA’S PREDICTED LINE UP VS BARCELONA:
Defence: Azpilicueta, Christensen, Rudiger
Midfield: Alonso, Kante, Fabregas, Moses.
Attack: Willian, Hazard, Pedro.
Chelsea might play the game with a positive intent but we don’t think that Conte will try and risk losing the game by a heavy margin. He will surely try to contain the Barcelona attack as long as he can and hope that his team can nick a goal or two in the process.