Predicted XI

Kovacic missing - How Chelsea could line up against Real Madrid in the Champions League

The Croatian is struggling with a hamstring issue and will miss the Champions League clash against his former club

 
11:24am on Monday 26th April 2021
By
Martin Macdonald

Chelsea will again be without midfielder Mateo Kovacic for this week's Champions League semi-final clash against Real Madrid.

The Croatian is unable to feature against his former club after failing to shake off a hamstring issue suffered a couple of weeks ago. He was missing for the games against Brighton last week and West Ham at the weekend, though should have recovered in time to play in the second leg in Spain.

Apart from that, Thomas Tuchel has a full squad at his disposal for the huge Champions League encounter.

In goal, Edouard Mendy returned to the starting XI in the weekend win versus the Hammers and will likely retain his spot after Kepa Arrizabalaga started a couple of games.

Cesar Azpilicueta will start on the right of the back three, having featured slightly further forward at wing-back against Chelsea. Thiago Silva could drop out as the Brazilian doesn't tend to start two matches in four days for the Blues.

That could mean a return for Reece James.

Ben Chilwell's defensive prowess is favoured over that of Marcos Alonso so it could be the case that the Englishman keeps his spot at left wing-back, even though Tuchel does like to rotate that position.

In the absence of Kovacic; N'Golo Kante and Jorgnho should partner each other in the centre of midfield.

Tuchel has plenty of options for his front three, with Mason Mount a certain starter.

Timo Werner grabbed the only goal of the game against West Ham and will probably keep his spot, though Christian Pulisic will likely drop to the bench with either Kai Havertz or Hakim Ziyech coming in as his replacement.

Chelsea predicted XI against Real Madrid

Latest news

Premier League

Premier League top scorers 2021/22: Bruno Fernandes joins leaderboard but Salah remains in control

The Liverpool forward leads the race for Golden Boot glory despite being at the AFCON, while the Man Utd star scored a double.

  • 11 hours
Predicted XI

Havertz and Mount to start? How Chelsea could line up against Brighton

Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel will have to make notable changes to the side that lost 1-0 to Manchester City on Saturday

  • 21 hours
Premier League

Premier League Table: Man City look unstoppable but Liverpool cling on to hope

Manchester City look to be romping to another Premier League title, but Liverpool are clinging onto hope after winning on Sunday.

  • 1 day
Predicted XI

How Real Madrid could line up against Athletic Bilbao

Real Madrid face Athletic Bilbao in the final of the Spanish Super Cup in Saudi Arabia

  • 2 days
Predicted XI

How Liverpool could line up against Brentford in the Premier League

Liverpool are still without Mohamed Salah and Sadio Mane due to their participation in the Africa Cup of Nations

  • 2 days
Predicted XI

Ronaldo fit - How Man Utd could line up against Aston Villa

Cristiano Ronaldo missed Man Utd's last match due to a hip problem but should feature in the Premier League

  • 3 days

Most read