It was clear today that Chelsea interim manager Frank Lampard had one eye on Tuesday night’s second leg of the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal tie with Real Madrid.
It’s evident in the starting lineup that he put out for today’s loss at home to Brighton & Hove Albion. Some big names: Reece James, Joao Felix, Mason Mount and Mateo Kovacic among others, were all on the bench.
Chelsea vs Real Madrid UCL Quarterfinal Leg 2/2 FYIs
Kick: Tuesday, April 18, 2023 8 PM Local Time, Stamford Bridge, London, UK
Aggregate: Real Madrid leads 2-0
Chelsea Preview Material: Team News Starting XI Prediction
Transatlantic Passage: How the Premier League Redefined Soccer in America: LINK
Win 90 Minute Result Probabilities: Chelsea 35%, Real Madrid 38%, Extra Time 27%
Expect them all to come back into the first team on Tuesday night, as the Blues enter the match staring a 0-2 deficit in the face for the tie. Before we get to our lineup prediction though, we should probably discuss how that squad rotation turned out.
Not well actually! like we said, it was an L, but it was actually even worse than that.
Brighton is a very good team this season, so there is no shame in that, but the way Chelsea lost was utterly shameful.
They were disaster class, as these stats tell the story of Seagulls domination. Brighton won possession 58% to 42% (although late in the game, the disparity was still around 70-30), shots 26-8, shots on goal 10-2.
Yikes! Chelsea’s season just keeps going from bad to worse to even worse to somehow even worse yet.
So with that in mind, let’s take a look at what the first team, in a 4-2-3-1 formation, might be when the Blues host the reigning European champions in midweek.
Chelsea FC Starting XI Prediction vs Real Madrid (UCL)
Kepa, Chalobah, Fofana, Badiashile, James; Enzo, Kovacic; Mudryk, Mount, Felix; Sterling
Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Sports Bank. He’s also the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”
He’s written for numerous publications, including the New York Daily News, Sports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune. He regularly appears on NTD News and WGN News Now. Follow the website on Twitter and Instagram.