Chelsea resume their UEFA Champions League title defense in midweek as they play host to Lille at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday.
Both sides squared off in the group stages of the competition last season, with the Blues claiming all three points in both encounters.
Hakim Ziyech was the savior for Chelsea over the weekend as he struck an 89th-minute goal to hand the Blues a slender 1-0 win at Crystal Palace in the Premier League.
Thomas Tuchel’s men, who recently clinched their first-ever Club World Cup title, now turn their attention to the Champions League where they finished runners-up in Group H, two points behind Juventus.
Chelsea are currently unbeaten in each of their last six outings, including five straight wins in that time, and will look to keep the juggernaut rolling as they try to defend their European title.
Lille, meanwhile, finished top of Group G with 11 points from six games, one point above second-placed Salzburg.
However, the defending French champions have struggled for consistency since the turn of the year, winning two, drawing two and losing three of their seven games in 2022.
Lille head into Tuesday’s game fresh off the back of a disappointing goalless draw with rock-bottom Metz in Ligue 1, where they are currently languishing in 11th place.
Chelsea vs Lille Head-To-Head
This will be the third meeting between the sides. They met in Group H of the competition last season, where Thomas Tuchel’s men claimed a 2-1 win in both home and away fixtures.
Chelsea Form Guide: W-W-W-W-W
Lille Form Guide: W-L-L-W-D
Chelsea vs Lille Team News
The Blues will take to the pitch without the services of the English trio of Mason Mount, Ben Chilwell and Reece James, who are all recuperating from injuries. Cesar Azpilicueta and Callum Hudson-Odoi are major doubts after missing the game against Crystal Palace with knocks.
Injured: Mason Mount, Ben Chilwell, Reece James
Doubtful: Cesar Azpilicueta, Callum Hudson-Odoi
Angel Gomes is the only injury concern for the visitors after the forward picked up a calf problem just 27 minutes into the game against Metz last time out.
Injured: Angel Gomes
Chelsea vs Lille Predicted XI
Chelsea Predicted XI (3-4-2-1): Eduoard Mendy; Andreas Christensen, Thiago Silva, Antonio Rudiger; Christian Pulisic, Jorginho, Kovacic, Marcus Alonso; Hakim Ziyech, Kai Havertz; Romelu Lukaku
Lille predicted XI (4-4-2): Léo Jardim, Jose Fonte, Sven Botman, Tiago Djaló; Gabriel Gudmundsson, Benjamin André, Amadou Onana, Jonathan Bamba, Timothy Weah; Jonathan David, Burak Yılmaz
Chelsea vs Lille Prediction
Despite their unconvincing performance, Chelsea managed to grind out a slender 1-0 win over Crystal Palace at the weekend. While we expect Lille to put up a fight, we are tipping the Blues to build on that victory and come away with a vital first-leg win.
Prediction: Chelsea 2-0 Lille
Paul Merson predicts the result of FA Cup final between Man City and Man Utd! Click here