Chelsea at Real Madrid (UCL) Team News: Hazard, Ramos, Kross, Kovacic

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Here we go, the very first international match-up of the post European Super League era. It’s a clash between one of the first clubs to leave, Chelsea, and the most ardent true believer in the concept in Real Madrid. While Chelsea was reportedly one of the last clubs to fully sign on to the Super League idea, Madrid President Florentino Perez is the main ringleader of the plot, and he’s still still holding out hope, even today that his vision might come to life at some point.

Madrid will host this match at their 6,000 seater training ground stadium, as covid protocols prevent a big crowd of fans coming to the Estadio Bernanbeu. Let’s preview!

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Chelsea at Real Madrid UCL Semifinal Leg 1/2 FYIs

Kickoff: Tues April 27, Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano, Madrid, 8pm

Starting XI Predictions: go here

Odds: Chelsea +220  Real Madrid +135   Draw +220

UCL Form Guide:  Chelsea WDWWWL    Real Madrid  LWWWWD

All Competitions Form Guide:  Chelsea  WWLWDW    Real Madrid  WWDDWD

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Team News for Both Sides

Belgian sensation and Chelsea club legend Eden Hazard will be fit to face his former mates, and that has to be the lead storyline here. However, given all the injuries he’s struggled with lately, he could only feature off the bench, like he just did against Real Betis.

Elsewhere midfielder Toni Kroos has been battling a muscular issue, but he should be available in this one. Ferland Mendy (calf) could be ready as well. However, it appears this match will come too soon for club captain Sergio Ramos (calf) and fellow defender Lucas Vazquez (knee).

Switching over to the visitors, Mateo Kovacic is their one and only fitness concern, with manager Thomas Tuchel already confirming the midfielder’s absence here. He is currently stricken with a hamstring injury. The inclusion of Christian Pulisic in the press conference today means he’s likely to get a first team assignment tomorrow night.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports IllustratedChicago Tribune and SB Nation. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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