The Blues will play host to Dynamo Kiev on Wednesday, following another disheartening loss against Liverpool at the weekend. Kiev enter the match off the back of a 2-0 victory in their domestic league against Metalist Kharkiv. Both Chelsea and the Ukrainian side will be looking to win, following a 0-0 tie between the two clubs a few weeks ago.
All eyes will be on Jose Mourinho, as the Blues boss has been under fire for most of this season. Every person in relation to football has an opinion on whether or not he should stay or be sacked, and whether or not Abramovich will actually pull the cord. I have stated in the past and stick by my opinion, the Portuguese manager should stay, he hasn’t had enough time to complete this rebuilding process that Chelsea are in.
Eden Hazard would do well to put in a good performance, as he has come under fire for most of the season, especially recently. The Belgian, widely regarded as one of the world’s finest talents, has severely struggled this campaign, failing to get in a rhythm or have much of an impact on most matches. Against Kiev at home, it is a perfect opportunity for the 24-year-old to make a return to center stage, and begin to pull Chelsea up by their bootstraps.
As far as predicting a starting lineup, it’ll be interesting to see which way Mourinho decides to go. In my opinion, at home against Kiev, Chelsea should go straight for the jugular. It’s time they have a blowout, turnaround performance.
That being said, I think Begovic keeps his place in goal, as Courtois still won’t be healthy til December. Zouma will slot in on the right. Although, Ivanovic is reportedly almost healthy, he will be best on the bench and letting the young Frenchman continue to plug the hole left by the Serbian. The center back pairing of Cahill and Terry should remain the same, and Azpilicueta will keep his spot at left back.
In the defensive midfield, Matic and Fabregas return to form a partnership in Chelsea’s pivot. The Spaniard will look to regain his creativity from a deep-lying position and Matic will try and reinstate his imposing presence.
Hazard keeps his place on the left wing, with Oscar deservedly keeping his place at the No.10 role, while Chelsea’s outstanding performer of the season, Willian, will play on the right wing. Diego Costa rounds out the squad up top, hopefully looking to net his first goal in a while for the Blues.
Overall, Mourinho has called this match a “must not lose” game. I believe it’s a “must win”. Not just for the Champions League group, but to maybe help Chelsea regain something remotely close to form. At home against a decent club at best is a good chance for Chelsea to blow things out of the water, and begin their turnaround. It has to start somewhere, why not against Kiev on Wednesday?
Predicted Lineup: Begovic, Zouma, Cahill, Terry, Azpilicueta, Fabregas, Matic, Willian, Oscar, Hazard, Diego Costa