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UCL: 5 things to expect as Real Madrid host Chelsea in quarter-final second leg

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Sulaimon Jamiu

Current holders Chelsea will be slugging it out with 13-time winners Real Madrid in the Bernabeu tonight in their second leg clash of the Champions League quarter-finals, in a pursuit of cementing a place in the semi finals, with the Blues bidding to overturn a 3-1 deficit.

Last Wednesday, Carlo Ancelotti’s men outsmarted, outclassed, and outplayed Thomas Tuchel’s Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. Playing with fire in their belly, the Los Blancos snatched a thoroughly deserved win in the first leg of their Champions League quarter-final clash. Their veteran striker, Karim Benzema, was the undisputed star of the show, netting a superb hat-trick to ensure Real Madrid’s first-ever win over Chelsea.

Here are the five things to expect from their much-anticipated clash tonight.

1. Switch in lineup/squad:

Real Madrid, having won the first leg of the encounter with a two-goal margin, looks to make some little changes in the squad and starting lineup with the likes of Mendy and castilla defender, Rafa Marin also called up to the team. A conventional 4-4-2 formation would be preferred by the Italian tactician.
Chelsea on the other hand, looking to overturn a 3-1 deficit at Stamford Bridge last week, looks to have some major changes in the squad, as star striker Romelu Lukaku set to miss out due to an Achilles injury.

2. Head to head:

Madrid looks to continue with their fine form, after recording their first ever victory over the Blues in the competition, having played 3 games with Chelsea winning twice and Real winning once.

3. A Hazard reunion:

The Los Blancos are to be without the Belgian superstar in the clash due to a long-term injury, hence, he will be available to meet with his former teammates and cheer on his current team from the stands.

4. The Bernabeu effect:

The 89,000-capacity Santiago Bernabeu, will welcome the Blues for the second time in a year. The fans’ loud non-stop singing, raising of the flags and scarfs, standing together in unison and supporting the time no matter what, will be an gigantic advantage to the home side.

5. Tactical superiority between the Italian gaffer and the German tactician:

There was a tactical imbalance between the two during the last encounter, where Carlo Ancelotti, whose midfield dominance is the bedrock of his tactics, outwitted Thomas Tuchel whose tactics is solely based on an all-attack pattern. However, the two are liable to strengthen their tactics, tonight.

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