Chelsea have been in a fine run of form in the Premier League under their new manager and once again, they managed to keep a clean sheet as they drew 0-0 vs Leeds United in the weekend.
The draw means the Blues are still holding onto that fourth place on the table but now they must keep the domestic tensions aside to focus on the Champions League where they take on Atletico Madrid.
Chelsea picked up a hard-fought 1-0 win in the first leg and this away goal somewhat gives a slight advantage to Thomas Tuchel’s side going into the return leg in midweek. Chelsea have kept a clean sheet in 5 of their last 7 matches in the Champions League and their defensive strength under their new boss should help them see this second leg through.
The manager does have a few suspensions and injuries to deal with but Tuchel has enough firepower in all departments to ensure that his side not only score an early goal but also manage to keep a clean sheet.
Chelsea team news vs Atletico Madrid:
The manager opted for a 4-2-3-1 formation against Leeds but should revert back to his usual 3-4-2-1 in midweek meaning Azpilicueta will slot back into central defence alongside Rudiger and Christensen.
Thiago Silva missed the Leeds game after he picked a niggle in training and since this is in the same area where he was earlier injured Tuchel might opt to rest him in midweek.
Jorginho is suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards meaning Kante and Kovacic will partner in central midfield with Alonso possibly playing as the left wing-back.
Hudson-Odoi can play at right wing-back but the manager could use Reece James in that role on Wednesday since the backline will need extra cover.
Mason Mount is also suspended for the same reason as Jorginho which could mean that Christian Pulisic will keep his place in the first XI from the Leeds United game. But there’s a bigger chance that Timo Werner will be partnered by someone like Hakim Ziyech or Kai Havertz in the attacking midfielder’s role
Ziyech was the better performer against Bielsa’s side as compared to Pulisic so he is more likely to get the nod in midweek.
Tammy Abraham is taking a long time to recover from his injury and as per the latest reports, he is not going to be ready for this Champions League game either. This could prompt Tuchel to use the physicality of Olivier Giroud up front.
Chelsea’s predicted line-up vs Atletico Madrid:
Predicted Starting Line-up: Mendy; Azpilicueta, Rudiger, Christensen; Kante, Mateo Kovacic, Reece James/Hudson-Odoi, Alonso; Werner, Ziyech/Havertz, Giroud.
Stats and suspensions via Whoscored.