Chelsea welcomes Real Madrid to Stamford Bridge for the first time on Wednesday. The stakes could not be higher as the Blues host the second leg of the Champions League semifinal match-up. The highly anticipated first leg did not disappoint as it was packed with excitement, big chances and even some weather obstacles. Overall, the two sides ooze confidence and class, making this semifinal one of the most intriguing in recent memory.
A lot of the focus leading into the first leg was on the links between the two sides. Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois, Mateo Kovacic and Marcos Alonso represent the players who have played on both sides; there was a family connection with Ferland and Edouard Mendy and even history between the gaffers. However, all of that talk quickly died down once Christian Pulisic and Karim Benzema put their best feet forward and stole the show. The brilliant strikes by each forward take us into the second leg with the tie level on goals. Nevertheless, it is Los Blancos that come to Stamford Bridge with everything to play for as the Blues lead on away goals.
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Thomas Tuchel and Zinedine Zidane have already engaged in one 90-minute tactical chess match in the last week. They’ll both now prepare for their second as they take multiple things into account. First and foremost, weather. A huge thunderstorm tore through Madrid during the first leg and unfortunately, the conditions in London may not be much different. At the moment, there is a high chance of rain on Wednesday in the English capital—which shouldn’t surprise anyone—but hopefully the storms will be gone by kickoff. Second, formations. The three-time Champions League winner on the Real Madrid sideline is keeping Tuchel on his toes. Zidane altered his team’s shape before kickoff in the first leg, throwing the Blues’ boss off guard. Chelsea will now be preparing for multiple ways Los Blancos could line up, whereas its formation is no secret to the Spaniards.
The last thing to keep an eye on in terms of preparations is the available personnel. Both sides were without some key figures in the first leg and that might not change in the second. Dani Carvajal and Raphael Varane have already been ruled out for the clash. On the other hand, Sergio Ramos and Mendy look in line to play. Hazard will likely start, as well. For the Blues, Kovacic is going to be a game-time decision. Tuchel noted that it looks unlikely he will feature due to a setback suffered on Friday. Chelsea is given a boost though in the form of Antonio Rudiger. He looks ready for action, albeit in a mask to help with his recovery from a recent facial injury.
Where can you view the live stream of Chelsea vs Real Madrid in the Champions League semifinal second leg?
Date: Wednesday, May 5
Time: 3:00 p.m. ET (8:00 p.m. GMT)
Location: London, England
Venue: Stamford Bridge
Referee: Daniele Orsato
Aggregate: 1-1 (CHE through on away goals)
TV Info: Paramount+ (USA), BT Sport (UK)
Live Stream: Paramount+ (USA)
There is nowhere to run or hide anymore. The eyes of the world will be on west London on Wednesday as the last place in the Champions League final is up for grabs. By then, we’ll know the winner of the Manchester City/Paris Saint-Germain semifinal on the other side of the bracket. One European giant will have booked its place and will be tuned in with the rest of us the following day. Can the Blues hang on to make their first final since Munich 2012 or will Zidane’s experienced Galacticos crush the dreams of this year’s cinderella side?