Reigning champions Chelsea are set to host Juventus at Stamford Bridge in the fifth gameweek of the UEFA Champions League. It is one of the most anticipated fixtures in the Champions League as the two European heavyweights fight for top spot in Group H.
While Juventus are still unbeaten in Europe this campaign, Chelsea's lone defeat came against the Old Lady in the reverse fixture in Turin. Thomas Tuchel's men will want to bounce back in their own backyard and emerge victorious in this high voltage encounter.
The defending champions will be wary of the Old Lady as Massimiliano Allegri's side have registered two consecutive victories in Serie A. Chelsea are the undisputed leaders in the Premier League and remain the team to beat this season.
On that note, let us take a look at
Chelsea vs Juventus Predictions
#5 Timo Werner to start the match
Alongside Romelu Lukaku, Timo Werner has been crucial for Chelsea under Thomas Tuchel. The German coach prefers Werner, who has a knack for troubling defenses with his pace and his ability to create space for his teammates. The 25-year old was sidelined earlier due to a thigh injury, missing some key fixtures for Chelsea.
However, recent reports and pictures of him training suggest Werner has recovered from his injury. Moreover, the forward was an unused substitute in their win against Leicester City in the Premier League. Werner is likely to start at Stamford Bridge against Juventus.
#4 Juventus to sit back and be counter-attacking in their approach
Under the tutelage of Massimiliano Allegri, Juventus have mastered the art of not conceding goals and grinding out victories. The Bianconeri are far from perfect, as evidenced through their inconsistency in the Italian top flight. But one thing is for sure, they have managed to be more organized and keep their defenses intact.
Juventus have been solid on the European circuit, keeping three clean sheets in four matches so far. They have conceded just two goals in the Champions League, both of them conceded in their encounter against Zenit. The Old Lady's 1-0 win against Chelsea in September paints a perfect picture of their tactics.
It is likely that Juventus will hold tight and secure their defenses before initiating any attack.
#3 Chelsea to win the midfield battle
Chelsea's midfield trio of Mason Mount, N'Golo Kante and Jorginho were some of the reasons for their stronghold in the Champions League last season. Currently, the Blues boast a perfectly balanced midfield which aids in their performance even when they are playing without a proper striker.
Moreover, Tuchel's system of using two full-backs has reaped dividends so far. The presence of wing-backs like Reece James, Ben Chilwell and Marcos Alonso provides aid to their offensive and defensive structure. It also helps the Chelsea midfielders move into space and dislodge defensive barriers with utter ease.
Meanwhile, Allegri is still looking for the right combination for his midfield. The addition of Maneul Locatelli was a welcome move but the rest of the Juventus midfielders need to step up. Against Chelsea, Juventus' midfielders are likely to suffer, which will help the Blues win the midfield battle.
#2 Juventus forwards likely to suffer against Chelsea's defense
Despite the presence of Juventus in their group, Chelsea have a sensational defensive record of their own in the Champions League. The Premier League giants have been rock solid in their defense and have conceded just one goal in Europe so far this campaign.
The towering presence of Thiago Silva, Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen has been beneficial for Chelsea. Juventus forward Federico Chiesa's goal was the only goal they have conceded in four Champions League games so far.
The presence of full-backs also helps to keep the defensive structure fluid and rigid at the same time.
Although the likes of Alvaro Morata and Chiesa can break any defensive barrier on their day, Chelsea's defense will be another huge challenge for them.
#1 Chelsea and Juventus to play out a tense draw
Chelsea and Juventus are two European heavyweights capable of earning a positive result on their day. Both teams boast some world class players in their ranks, with the Blues having better depth on paper. But no one can rule out a team like Juventus, even though they are enduring a difficult start to the campaign.
The Bianconeri have been a bit shaky in Serie A but two consecutive wins will be a huge confidence boost for them. At Stamford Bridge, they will look to repeat their performance in the reverse fixture and confirm their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League.
Chelsea have a stronger squad but they have had trouble against resilient sides so far. A negative result in their fifth match will likely complicate things and Tuchel will have revenge on his mind in their own home.
Our guess is that both teams will play out a tense day, with neither side able to truly dominate and emerge victorious.