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Comment: Three Things Chelsea Need to Be Wary of vs Real Madrid

Chelsea’s Champions League defence continues on Wednesday night against the competition’s most successful team, Real Madrid, at Stamford Bridge in the first leg of the two European giants’ quarter-finals.

As mentioned, the Thomas Tuchel's side are the holders of this tournament, and because of that, are slight favourites to get last season’s Spanish La Liga runners-up. 

Despite carrying the tag of favourites, Tuchel’s men will need to be wary of Real Madrid, especially after witnessing what they did to his former employers, Paris Saint-Germain, in the previous round.

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Here are three things Chelsea need to be wary of vs Real Madrid:


Carlo’s comeback

One of the biggest tactical threats Chelsea could have faced in the Champions League will be Carlo Ancelotti. The Real Madrid boss endured a successful spell at Chelsea, winning the league and FA Cup double in 2009/10 season and gave the club a brand-new identity, playing some of the best football the club has produced in its lifetime.

Ancelotti has come of age and may be past his best as a manager, but knowing the club and having the ability to identify weakness in any team, the former Blues mentor is more than capable of getting the better of Chelsea on his day.

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The form of Karim Benzema

The French superstar single-handedly booked his team’s spot in the quarter-finals, scoring a hat-trick in the second leg of Real Madrid’s tie against PSG. Benzema is likely to be fit for Los Blancos’ trip to Stamford Bridge and will lead the line from the start.

The 34-year-old is producing some of the best football in his career despite being in the swansong stage of his illustrious career. This season, Benzema has banged in eight goals and one assist in just seven Champions League fixtures.

He’s benefitting from the pace around him and across all competitions, Benzema played a part in 45 goals in 34 matches, scoring 32 times. The Blues’ backline will need to be at their best to stop Madrid’s top scorer this season.

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Big match temperament

It goes without saying that this is the biggest tournament in the world and it’s no surprise that Real Madrid are the most successful club in it. No stage is too big for them, at any round of the competition, and have multiple Champions League winners within their squad and coaching staff.

Chelsea, themselves, have massive big match temperament, but this will be another huge test for Tuchel’s side. Real Madrid have plenty of youthful talent in their squad, but have kept the bulk of their experience – most notably the midfield trio of Toni Kroos, Luka Modric and Casemiro.


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