‘No problem’ with Todd Boehly visiting Chelsea dressing room, Lampard says

Chelsea have work to do tonight as they host Real Madrid in the second leg of their Champions League quarter final. Carlo Ancelotti’s European champions bring a two-goal advantage into the match at Stamford Bridge after Karim Benzema and Marco Asensio struck in the Spanish capital last week.

Chelsea find themselves in the midst of a terrible run of form with Frank Lampard’s return as caretaker manager showing few signs of righting the ship. The hosts know they must score at least twice to have any hope of ending Real Madrid’s defence of their crown.

After suffering another Premier League defeat at the weekend, the Blues’ struggles look set to continue after reports that owner Todd Boehly told the squad their efforts this season were ‘embarrassing’. The prospect of a miraculous turnaround is highly unlikely against a team of serial winners but the Champions League has the tendency to showcase some incredible comeback victories.

For their part, Real Madrid will believe this season a failure if they do not win the top trophy in Europe. Barcelona are on course to win the La Liga title leaving Ancelotti’s men to fight it out for Champions League glory once more.

Follow all the action as Chelsea host Real Madrid in the Champions League quarter-final second leg:


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

The players step out of the tunnel at Stamford Bridge and walk onto the pitch.

This is a massive night for Chelsea, if they overturn this two-goal deficit they could go on to win the Champions League. Fail to do so and they’re consigned to one of their worst seasons in almost two decades.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:58


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

The warm-ups are all done and dusted. The teams will be heading onto the pitch in a couple of minutes time. Nerves will be flying and there’s a hum of anticipation inside the stadium.

(Action Images via Reuters)


Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:53


The Champions League desperately needs an injection of chaos

For all their contrasting histories in the Champions League, Frank Lampard and Thomas Tuchel have this week found themselves in similar positions. They have both had to try and make their squads believe they can overcome almost overwhelming situations.

Chelsea are 2-0 down to Real Madrid and Bayern Munich 3-0 down to Manchester City, but the two managers are trying to get their players to overlook these bare facts. Tuchel has been telling his players that, in general play, they were as good as City and it was only individual moments that cost them. The stirring talk is that, consequently, they can just as easily score three.

Lampard has meanwhile been drawing on 2012 again, and how his Chelsea team were also two goals down to Napoli before the most famous comeback in the club’s history.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:48


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

Thibaut Courtois never faced Real Madrid when he was a Chelsea player but since moving to Spain he has come up against his old side five times so far.

Tonight, on his sixth appearance against the Blues he’ll look to add to the three wins and a draw he has in games with them so far.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:43


Pre-match thoughts from Frank Lampard

Chelsea boss Frank Lampard spoke to BT Sport before tonight’s second leg against Real Madrid.

“When I look at us at the moment, firstly you have to respect the opponent and level of game. You have to pick players who are in good shape and in good nick.

“With the wing-backs, shaping up like we were last week, that was part of the game we didn’t use enough. We have the legs and energy in there.

“It’s a reality of where we are. We know we want more goals as a team. You can’t wave a magic wand and just tell players to start scoring more goals.

“We have to stay in the game, keep a clean sheet, then we have impact players coming off the bench. I said to the players before, it’ll probably be a player or players coming off the bench who make the difference.”

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:38


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

This evening’s match marks Toni Kroos’ 150th game in all European competitions.

During that time he has won the Champions League with two separate clubs – four times at Real Madrid and once at Bayern Munich.

Perhaps most famously Kroos was a part of the Real Madrid side that lifted the trophy in three consecutive years in 2016, 2017 and 2018.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:33


The Champions League has exposed a key flaw in Chelsea’s confused thinking

It may be a parable of Todd Boehly’s Chelsea, a club where it is possible to have both too many players and too few, where footballers are bought but they can’t be used, where strategy was eschewed in favour of scattergun spending.

When Real Madrid visit Stamford Bridge, there would be strong grounds for Frank Lampard to select Benoit Badiashile, except for one minor issue: he is ineligible. The Frenchman is one of the few signings to make a promising start to a Chelsea career this season, but he is unavailable. As Kalidou Koulibaly is injured, as Ben Chilwell is suspended, as Levi Colwill is out on loan along with Malang Sarr, Chelsea’s sextet of left-sided defenders is reduced to one: Marc Cucurella, a disastrous signing and, indeed, a reason why their contingent is so depleted.

The Spaniard came on when Koulibaly limped off in the Bernabeu last week: he was caught out of position when Chilwell, in an attempt to compensate, was sent off. And so Lampard may have to pick a back four for the rematch. He might have done anyway – it is a way to incorporate an extra attacker for a team who need to score goals – but the tactics could be dictated by a Chelsea-esque sense of chaos.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:28


Real ‘motivated’ for tonight’s clash says Ancelotti

”We are fine, motivated, as always.” said Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti,

“These are important matches in an important competition. We are thinking that we have to play a full game. We have 90 minutes left and in this type of competition anything can happen.

“We are ready to play the best we can.”


Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:23


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

Chelsea are without a win in their last six matches across all competitions but their most recent Uefa Champions League record is much better.

They have won nine of their last 11 matches in the competitions at Stamford Bridge (D1 L1), including each of their last three home fixtures.

Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:18


Chelsea vs Real Madrid

Real Madrid, like Chelsea, have won nine of their last 11 Uefa Champions League matches (D1 L1). They have, however, also come out on top in each of their last 10 quarter-final ties in the competition.


Mike Jones18 April 2023 19:13

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