Chelsea were handed a big blow in their pursuit of the Premier League title after the Blues suffered a disappointing loss at the hands of Aston Villa over the weekend. Now, Jose Mourinho’s side will have to direct their attention to the Champions League, where they will welcome Turkish side Galatasaray on Tuesday night.
Mourinho has forged himself a reputation as a bit of a specialist in Europe’s elite competition and with the tie against Galatasaray tantalizingly poised heading into the game at Stamford Bridge, the Portuguese manager will surely be looking to get one over his old foe, Roberto Mancini.
Despite all the changes at Stamford Bridge over the last few years, Petr Cech has been a constant at Chelsea. The Czech international seems to get better with age and has been solid as ever this season. Cech will surely start between the sticks against Galatasaray and the 31-year old will have to be on his guard against the dangerous Turkish side’s attack.
Jose Mourinho does not tend to shuffle his backline too often and it will not be a surprise to see the Portuguese manager stick with the same back-four, which has served him so well throughout the current campaign.
The solid Branislav Ivanovic will start at right-back, while Cesar Azpilicueta, who has been a revelation this season, looks set to continue at left-back. English duo Gary Cahill and John Terry have forged quite a formidable central defensive partnership and will once again line-up at the heart of the defence for Chelsea. Ashley Cole has not returned to full training as of yet and looks set to miss out completely.
Despite being unable to call on the services of Mohamed Salah and Nemanja Matic due to the duo’s ineligibility from the competition, Mourinho will have a lot of options in midfield.
Star man Eden Hazard looks a certainty to start, while the duo of Ramires and Frank Lampard will most probably line-up in midfield, with Oscar handed a playmaker’s role after settling for a place on the bench in the first leg.
The likes of John Obi Mikel and possibly David Luiz will also be in contention to start if Mourinho opts to go with a cautious approach, while Willian could get the nod ahead of Andre Schürrle for a place on the wings.
Mourinho has been handed a huge boost after the return of Samuel Eto’o to full training and the Cameroonian could well make a start ahead of Fernando Torres in attack after the Spaniard’s ineffectual performance against Aston Villa in the weekend. Demba Ba will most probably again have to be content with a place on the bench.
Cech; Azpilicueta, Cahill, Terry, Ivanovic; Hazard, Ramires, Lampard, Oscar, Willian; Eto’o