Report: Why Chelsea Could Play Champions League Home Matches Away From Stamford Bridge

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Chelsea could be forced to play their home ties in the Champions League away from Stamford Bridge this summer, according to reports.

The Blues are set to begin the defence of their European crown against Zenit St Petersburg on Tuesday 14 September, after sealing victory in the final last season with a 1-0 victory over Manchester City in Portugal.

The west Londoners will also face Juventus and Malmö FF in the group-stage, as Thomas Tuchel looks to guide his side to guide his side to the knock-out stages in his first full-season at Stamford Bridge.

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However, according to the latest set of UEFA guidelines via inews, COVID-19 restrictions and the variable vaccination status of players could force Premier League sides to conduct their home clashes at the away side's ground.

As per a set of new rules established by UEFA on Tuesday, home sides for a Champions League tie must ensure that their government hands exemptions for visiting opponents.

It has further been stated that the home side will forfeit the tie should they fail to stage a venue free from restrictions or agree to find a neutral venue to conduct the clash.

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The special UEFA annexure reads: “In all cases, the clubs may agree – subject to UEFA’s approval – on a venue reversal or on a neutral venue (within the territory of a UEFA member association), provided that no restrictions apply and no city or stadium clash is caused with other UEFA fixtures.”

As per current UK Government rules, visitors from amber listed countries who have not been fully jabbed must quarantine for 10 days, but anyone who has been fully vaccinated doesn't have to undergo a period of self-isolation.

 Italy, Spain and France are on the UK Government's amber list, with Premier League sides already struggling with a number of foreign players having to quarantine on their return to the country from international duty


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