All to play for in London as Chelsea welcome Frankfurt to town


Chelsea must avoid defeat, or a draw if their opponents score, at Stamford Bridge to reach the Europa League final.

In the first leg the Blues had to come from behind after Luka Jović put the Eagles one up; however, an all-important away goal from Pedro means that all eyes will be on London to see who progresses to play either Arsenal or Valencia in the final.

Chelsea’s impressive unbeaten record at home to Bundesliga teams makes them formidable opponents – the Blues have won six out of the eight matches played.

On the other hand, Frankfurt have beaten a team from the Premier League just twice, most recently in 1981/1982 against Tottenham.

Frankfurt’s hopes of European football next season took a damning blow as Adi Hütter’s were comfortably beaten by top-four rivals Bayern Leverkusen 6-1.

It means the German side must beat both 1. FSV Mainz 05 and Bayern Munich to be in the Champions League next season.

After scoring in the first leg, Jović’s goalscoring tally – 26 in all competitions – could make him the deciding factor between whether the Eagles achieve European success or not.

From the dug-outs

Maurizio Sarri spoke about the level of standards in the English top flight:

“I think that’s clear. You need to consider that, for an English team, it’s not easy to arrive in May in a very good physical condition. Tomorrow we will play match No61 of our season. It’s not easy not only physically, but mentally as well, I think.

“The level is clear: if you consider that we got to the final in the League Cup and had to play against Liverpool, against Tottenham and, in the final, against Manchester City. So you have an idea about the level.”

Frankfurt boss Hütter spoke after his side lost to Leverkusen:

“The fact that we did not show our true ability today is one thing, but on Thursday I think that we are getting our heads free again.

“Of course we will speak about the defeat as well. With the way we played today, we have little chance on Thursday.

“But I am convinced that the team will show a different side again.”

Team news

Chelsea continue without Callum Hudson-Odoi (Achilles), Antonio Rüdiger (Knee) and Ethan Ampadu (Back).

Midfielder N’Golo Kanté had to be substituted off against Watford is not likely to feature.

Eden Hazard, benched for the first leg, could lead Chelsea’s attacking line. The Belgian has 19 goals and 13 assists in 48 games for the Premier League side.

Olivier Giroud (10) is top scorer in the Europa League; however, having failed to score in the first leg, Jović (9) is not far off from overtaking the Frenchman’s goal tally in the competition.

Frankfurt could welcome back Croatian forward Ante Rebić who was suspended for the first leg. Sébastien Haller, Marc Stendara and Taleb Tawatha all remain out injured though.


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News writer for Prost International, I get out to games but mainly cover EFL and women's football. Found here:

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