Chelsea travel to the Bernabeu to face Real Madrid in the Champions League quarterfinals, with Frank Lampard's men aiming to defy the odds.
The UEFA Champions League offers us another classic encounter, and this time, it is Chelsea against Real Madrid. One team is struggling badly to generate any kind of momentum, and the other is disappointing in the league but flying high in Europe.
Despite what seems like a total inability to find the net, Chelsea still possess players capable of the odd moment of magic.
Here are the five Chelsea players who could put a dent in Real Madrid's Champions League aspirations.
5) Kai Havertz
Havertz is Chelsea’s top scorer this season, and despite the club’s season-long struggles to find the net, he remains the Blues’ likeliest goalscorer.
His silky movement can sometimes go undetected, and for a team that may need to do a lot of pressing from the front, Havertz has energy to burn.
The Germany international will likely be deployed as a false nine, and the Real Madrid defense must be alert to deny him space to operate.
4) Reece James
Reece James is Chelsea’s prime creator. Whether starting at right-back or right-wing-back, James has the ability to unlock defenses with his vision and crossing ability.
This season has been a strange one for the Chelsea full-back. He has struggled with injuries, managerial changes, and system changes but now looks back to full fitness and could provide the magic the Blues need to overcome Real Madrid.
James would also need to be at his absolute best defensively to curtail the attacking exploits of Vinicius Junior, who tormented Liverpool right-back Trent Alexander-Arnold in the previous round and is a threat to any defense.
3) Raheem Sterling
Sterling is another one who has struggled with injuries and has had a hard time adapting to the different systems and setups throughout the season.
Signed under Thomas Tuchel, he was initially expected to line up on the left wing and occasionally through the middle. Under former boss Graham Potter, he ended up playing at wing-back before picking up an injury.
However, Sterling is a lethal goalscorer, as his Man City days showed, and provided with the right amount of service, he could be a match winner for Chelsea against Real Madrid.
2) Joao Felix
If anyone has the ability to unlock a defense, it is Joao Felix. The Portuguese, on loan from Atletico Madrid, have shone in their time at Stamford Bridge.
so much so that fans have called for the club to make his loan move permanent. Despite scoring only two goals since he arrived in January,
Felix has enough in his locker to unleash mayhem on the Real Madrid defense.
1 ) N’Golo Kante
The Chelsea midfielder’s absence has certainly been one of the contributing factors to their awful form this season.
His ability to break up play and drive from deep is unrivaled in world football, and he would be a big miss for any side.
Despite adding a raft of attacking stars to the team in the winter window, Kante is really the glue that can make it all stick.
A 10/10 performance from Kante usually signals a Chelsea win, and if he plays anywhere close to his rampaging best, Real Madrid’s midfielders will have their work cut out for them.