Chelsea vs Borussia Dortmund: Champions League – LIVE!
Chelsea go in search of a win that could turn their season around tonight as they host Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League. Trailing 1-0 after the first leg in Germany, the Blues know they have to win on the night if they are to progress through to the quarter-finals.
Graham Potter’s side at least go into tonight’s Stamford Bridge clash off the back of a victory, having edged past Leeds over the weekend. The run now stands at three wins in 16 matches, with goals still a clear problem. Injuries continue to hurt Chelsea, with the likes of Thiago Silva and Mason Mount out, but Reece James is fit to start.
Dortmund meanwhile have won all 10 games they have played in 2023, leaving them level on points with Bayern Munich at the top of the Bundesliga. They arrive in London full of confidence, even if first-leg match-winner Karim Adeyemi is out injured. Follow all the action LIVE below, featuring expert analysis from Nizaar Kinsella at Stamford Bridge.
Nizaar Kinsella at Stamford Bridge
Fans could be in trouble
Chelsea supporters lit flares outside Stamford Bridge ahead of their Champions League clash with Borussia Dortmund, risking prosecution from the police, writes Nizaar Kinsella.
Around a dozen supporters had pyrotechnics outside the stadium, sparking a response from police on horses and spotters to record the scene.
Stewards working from the club rushed to stop those on Fulham Road from entering the stadium.
Graham Potter has been trying to whip up an atmosphere ahead of a match that represents a final chance of silverware. They were, however, warned in a club statement about a ‘zero tolerance’ approach to flares this season.
Those identified could face ‘a permanent criminal record, which may affect their employment and education, and could result in a prison sentence’, a statement read. Chelsea could also ban fans for up to three years.
James gives Chelsea boost
James is indeed fit for Chelsea in a big boost, starting at right wing-back. Koulibaly, Cucurella and Fofana get the nod in the back three.
It’s Fernandez and Kovacic in midfield as expected, with Havertz getting the nod to leane the line. Mudryk once again on the bench.
Kobel only fit enough for the bench for Dortmund, so Meyer starts in goal. Haller up front, with Reus and Brandt in wide areas. Bellingham will be looking to impress back in England.
Dortmund team news
Dortmund XI: Meyer, Wolf, Sule, Schlotterbeck, Guerreiro, Can, Ozcan, Bellingham, Brandt, Reus, Haller.
Subs: Kobel, Unbehaun, Reyna, Dahoud, Hummels, Modeste, Malen, Meunier, Passlack, Rothe, Bynoe-Gittens, Coulibaly
Chelsea team news
Chelsea XI: Kepa; Fofana, Koulibaly, Cucurella; James, Fernandez, Kovacic, Chilwell; Sterling, Felix, Havertz
Subs: Bettinelli, Bergstrom, Pulisic, Loftus-Cheek, Chalobah, Mudryk, Zakaria, Ziyech, Gallagher, Chukwuemeka, Hall
Chilwell: We need to push on
Ben Chilwell says that Chelsea’s confidence has grown but wants victory over Borussia Dortmund to set Graham Potter’s side up for the rest of the season.
The Blues ended a six-game winless run with a 1-0 victory over Leeds on Saturday after Wesley Fofana headed in Chilwell’s corner in the second half.
Speaking ahead of a crucial return fixture in a competition which represents the club’s last chance at silverware this season, Chilwell issued a rallying cry.
The wing-back said: “We know the performances and the results haven’t been up to Chelsea’s standards. That’s all we care about.
“We know that we need to keep working hard. Saturday was a win but we don’t want to get carried away. We want to win every game at Stamford Bridge.
“It is a step in the right direction but we need to push on now. If we can get a win on Tuesday, that can hopefully set us up for the rest of the season.”
Chelsea to be transformed?
Reece James’s return to fitness might be just the boost Chelsea need ahead of a season-defining night.
The 23-year-old is expected to be fit to start at Stamford Bridge, as Chelsea bid to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit in their Champions League last-16 tie against Borussia Dortmund.
For Graham Potter, the timing of his return might be crucial. Pressure on the head coach slightly alleviated after a 1-0 win over Leeds on Saturday, but tonight could have a significant bearing on his future.
James missed the Leeds game with a tight hamstring, but he trained yesterday and Potter hopes he can have a transformative effect on his struggling team.
Read Nizaar Kinsella’s full preview here
Dortmund in the building!
Standard Sport prediction
Chelsea have just about improved from a first leg that they certainly created enough chances in. They have also been slightly boosted by the win over Leeds last time out, a rare feeling for the Blues in recent weeks.
However, Dortmund know they only need to avoid defeat to qualify for the next round and are on a run of ten straight wins. They will fancy themselves to get the job done.
A 1-1 draw.
Dortmund team news
Dortmund are facing a night potentially without first-choice goalkeeper Gregor Kobel, who had to be replaced by Alexander Meyer after suffering an injury in the warm-up of Friday’s win over RB Leipzig.
Kobel has made the trip but it remains to be seen if he will be able to play any part tonight. Donyell Malen is fit for the visitors, but first-leg match-winner Karim Adeyemi is out along with Youssoufa Moukoko, Julien Duranville and Mateu Morey.