Jose Mourinho would be hoping that his team can carry forward the momentum following their 1-0 win in the league game against Norwich City over the weekend. Chelsea ended a run of three straight Premier League defeats on Saturday after beating Norwich 1-0 and certainly looked a much-improved team after coming back from the international break.
Even though the Blues weren't at their best, they certainly showed a lot of improvement and desire to get back to winning ways.
Chelsea now travel to Israel for their Champions League game against Maccabi Tel-Aviv. Chelsea are currently sitting in second place, three points behind group leaders Porto, who are on 10 points. A win against Maccabi would almost confirm their berth in the next round.
Should Mourinho's men beat Maccabi and Porto manage to beat Dynamo Kyiv tonight, then Chelsea will confirm it’s place in the round of 16 and would then aim at beating Porto in their last group stage match to top their group.
The last time these two sides met, the game ended 4-0 in favour of Chelsea with goals from Willian, Oscar, Fabregas and Costa.
Kickoff and Live Telecast
Date and Time: Tuesday, 24 November 2015 – 19:45 GMT (Wednesday, 25 November 2015 – 1:15 AM IST)
Channel: Ten Sports
Live stream: tensports.com
Venue: Samy Ofer Stadium, Haifa
Mourinho will be without the services of injured goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who has started training with the rest of the squad, but won't feature until December at least. Radamel Falcao is not available either. Apart from these two players, Mourinho has everyone else to choose from.
Kenedy, who started as a left-back in the weekend, had a really good match, and the fans would definitely be eager to see who starts as a left-back in this game. John Terry and Kurt Zouma are expected to start the match with Asmir Begovic as the keeper.
Eden Hazard looked in fine form against Norwich in the no.10 role. Hazard has said that he likes playing the no 10 role and would love to do so in the future as well, but Mourinho prefers playing him on the left.
Having just scored his 100th league goal at the weekend, Zahavi is expected to be a part of the attacking force along with T Ben Haim II and Vermouth. Dejan Radonjic is a doubt for Maccabi as he is suffering from a calf injury.
Good news for Slavisa is that Tal Ben Haim, who is a former Chelsea player, was a doubt for this match but is now expected to be fit for the clash. Apart from that, there are no injury worries for Slavisa Jokanvoic and he has his full squad at disposal to choose from.
Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Begovic; Ivanovic, Zouma, Terry, Azpilicueta; Fabregas, Loftus-Cheek; Willian, Hazard, Pedro; Costa
Maccabi (4-3-3): Rajkvoic; Harush, T Ben Haim, Gracia, Tibi; Pertez, Alberman, Reikan; Vermouth, Zahavi, T Ben Haim II
Chelsea come into this game with just a single win over Norwich in the weekend, after losing three consecutive Premier League games. A lot has been said about the current Premier League Champions who are having a disastrous season.
The Boys in Blue really have to pull up their socks and finish in the top 4, if they want to qualify for the Champions League next season or their only option will be to win the Champions League this season. Although Jose has not ruled out a top 4 finish, he very well knows that he has a tough job in hand to make it come true.
Jose Mourinho would want to win against Maccabi as it would almost confirm his team's place in the round of 16 as he knows the last game against Porto won't be an easy fixture.
Recent form (all competitions): L-L-W-L-W (Last match: Chelsea 1-0 Norwich)
Unlike Chelsea, Maccabi arrive in this game in good form, winning back-to-back games. They beat fierce rivals Hapoel Haifa 3-0 on Saturday. However, Slavisa Jokanovic's team has lost all their games in the Champions League so far. This has been a big worry for him. Although it's confirmed his side won't go past this round, he still has pride to play for.
With nothing to loose, Maccabi are expected to go all out against Chelsea. Maccabi are desperate to register their first win in the competition and if they manage to do so against Chelsea, it would act as a morale booster for the club and they would be hoping to end this campaign with a win in the last game as well.
Recent form(all competitions): L-W-L-W-W (Last Match: Hapoel Haifa 0-3 Maccabi)
Key points (Powered by Opta)
- This match would be the second mettinmeetingen these two sides in Europe. Chelsea won the reverse fixture (4-0) in September at Stamford Bridge.
- The Boys in Blue have registered just 2 wins out of their last 10 away games in Champions League (D5 L3)
- Maccabi, who are yet to win a match in the Champions League this season so far, have registered just one win out of their last 10 Champions League games.
- Maccabi Tel Aviv have scored the joint joint-fewest in the Champions League this season (1). They have also conceded the joint most (11).
Well, Chelsea are the favourites to win this match. With Maccabi yet to register their first win in the competition, this match shouldn't be hard for The Boys in Blue to win. Just like the reverse fixture, expecting Chelsea to win the game 4-0 which would definitely be a morale booster for the team and they would be full of confidence when they face Spurs in the weekend.
Predicted Score: Maccabi Tel-Aviv 0-4 Chelsea
Betting odds (Bet365)