CHELSEA could welcome back captain Cesar Azpilicueta against Real Madrid after the defender tested negative for Covid-19.
Thomas Tuchel confirmed this in his press conference on Monday before the trip to the Bernabeu.
But the Germany manager might not make too many changes to his team after Chelsea beat Southampton 6-0 on Saturday.
Saints boss Ralph Hasenhüttl was blown away by the performance of Tuchel’s side and that can only mean a change or two on Tuesday.
Romelu Lukaku will be absent again with an Achilles issue, so Timo Werner is expected to keep attacking.
He could start in a central role alongside Kai Havertz after scoring twice from that position on Saturday, with Mason Mount acting just behind the top two.
Alternatively, Tuchel can opt to play 3-4-3 and start Mount on the right with either Werner or Christian Pulisic on the left.
Tuchel’s other dilemma is whether to play in midfield alongside N’Golo Kante against Jorginho or Matteo Kovacic.
What is almost certain is that Chelsea will play with five defenders – Reece James is likely to replace Ruben Loftus-Cheek at right-back, although the latter is doing well there at St Mary’s.
Tuchel also has a tough decision to make in defense – who should he pick out of Azpilicueta and Andreas Christensen?
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The skipper would bring more experience but he looked shaky in recent home defeats to Brentford and of course Real Madrid.
Vinicius Jr. offers plenty of pace and threat on Real’s left wing so Azpilicueta could even start at full-back if James is out if Tuchel feels his side need extra defensive protection.
Tuchel also announced that Callum Hudson-Odoi and Ben Chilwell will not remain in action while Ross Barkley is ill and will sit out the second leg.
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