Chelsea vs Atletico Madrid – Champions League Preview – After securing their place in the knockout rounds of the Champions League, Chelsea will be hoping to seal top spot against Atletico Madrid on Tuesday night.
Antonio Conte’s men hold a two-point lead at the top of Group C and know a win would secure them first place. Chelsea beat Atletico back on matchday two, with a late Michy Batshuayi goal sealing them the win.
Chelsea have won five of their last six games, and haven’t lost since their defeat to Roma in October. In the league, Chelsea secured their sixth win in seven games when they beat Newcastle 3-1 at the weekend. In keeping with his recent form, Eden Hazard ran the show, grabbing himself another brace. The Belgian now has 11 goals this season, despite missing the beginning of the campaign through injury. If Chelsea are to challenge for the title, then their hopes are pinned on the form of this man.
Since losing to Roma 3-0, Conte has dropped Brazilian defender David Luiz. The Brazilian had been a mainstay since re-joining the club last year, but after an alleged row with Conte, he has started just two games since October. In his place, Andreas Christensen has impressed. The Danish defender is finally getting a run in the team at the heart of Chelsea’s back three and has looked accomplished. He has started Chelsea’s last five games with the side only conceding two goals and collecting three clean sheets. If the Danish youngster continues in this rich vein of form, it might spell the end for Luiz’s second stint at the club.
Atletico go into this match knowing they have to win. Anything less than three points would see the Spanish club dumped out at the group stages after reaching the semi-final or better in three of the last four years. If Atletico do win, they have to hope Roma fail to beat Qarabag, a result that would see Diego Simeone’s men through by virtue of their head to head record.
The last time these two sides met at Stamford Bridge was the semi-final of this competition in 2014. Atletico won 3-1 at Stamford Bridge to take them through to the final, where they would be later defeated 4-1 by Real. Having met only six times in Europe, Chelsea have won twice.
In the league this season, Chelsea have kept seven clean sheets from their 15 games. That percentage ranks them joint second in the division, with only Manchester United above them. Similarly, Atletico have been one of the tightest defences in La Liga, conceding just seven goals. Keeper Jan Oblak has managed eight clean sheets from 14 games as a result.
With that in mind, I think this will be a tight game with a lot riding on it. I think Chelsea may just scrape through with a victory, given their impressive form of late.
Prediction: Chelsea 1-0 Atletico Madrid
SKYBET: MORATA AND GRIEZMANN TO BOTH SCORE- 11/2
SKYBET: BTTS AND ATLETICO TO WIN- 6/1
SKYBET: HAZARD TO SCORE AND CHELSEA TO WIN 2-1- 28/1
SKYBET: WILLIAN TO SCORE OUTSIDE THE AREA- 5/1
BET365: ATLETICO TO WIN 1-0- (link no longer available)
BET365: CORRECT SCORE CHELSEA 1-0- (link no longer available)
BET365: TOTAL GOALS AND BTTS- (link no longer available)