Shakhtar vs Chelsea: Preview, Team News, Likely Line-ups & Predicted Score
Chelsea face a tough trip to Ukraine on Tuesday night when they face Shakhtar Donetsk at the Donbass Arena in their UEFA Champions League group E encounter.
Chelsea face a tough trip to Ukraine on Tuesday night as they face Shakhtar Donetsk at the Donbass Arena in their UEFA Champions League group E encounter.
Captain John Terry is expected to return after serving the first of his four-match domestic ban during Saturday’s 4-2 win over Tottenham at White Hart Lane.
Terry has been handed a hefty fine by the club for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand but has held on to the armband and received the backing of his manager Roberto Di Matteo.
The defending European champions go into the game on four points from their opening two fixtures after throwing away a 2-goal lead to Juventus before beating Nordsjaelland, so a positive result against Shakhtar is required.
The Ukrainians are joint top of the group with the Blues and the forthcoming double-header between the two sides may prove decisive in how group E pans out.
Shakhtar will prove to be tough opposition though with Lucuscu’s side currently on a run of 21 wins on the bounce in the Ukrainian Premier League.
Frank Lampard is expected to return to the starting eleven after only managing a late substitute appearance against Spurs.
The 34-year-old was forced to miss England’s World Cup double-header during the international break so wasn’t risked from the start at White Hart Lane but is now fit enough to take his place in the starting line-up tonight.
Roberto Di Matteo has no new injury worries and the biggest decision is who to drop at centre back to make way for Terry. Gary Cahill put in a fine display against Tottenham, including scoring a stunning volley, so it will be tough for the Italian to leave him out. But Di Matteo is expected to go with his preferred pairing of Terry and Luiz.
Shakhtar also have a fully-fit squad to choose from and the key man for the visitors is Chelsea target Willian. The Brazilian has been heavily linked with a move to Stamford Bridge in recent transfer windows and will be out to prove his worth tonight.
Donetsk is never an easy place to go and a draw should be considered a good result for Chelsea tonight, and that’s the result we’re going with. Shakhtar 1-1 Chelsea.
What would your Chelsea team be and what do you think the score will be? Get involved in the comments section.
Fancy a flutter on the game? Claim your £10 welcome bonus at Sky Bet and enjoy some of the best match odds in the business.