Chelsea head into tonight's Europa League last-16 second leg clash at Stamford Bridge looking to overturn a one-goal deficit from last week's 1-0 defeat against Steaua Bucharest.

The Romanian outfit - who are the most successful football team in their country when it comes to European competitions - recorded an impressive result at the halfway stage of the two legged tie, keeping a clean sheet at Arena Nationala last Thursday, giving Laurentiu Reghecampf's a strong chance of progressing to the quarter-finals.

Frank Lampard has already warned his Chelsea team-mates that they must not take Steaua lightly, and is anticipating a tightly-contested match this evening.

The midfielder became the club's third highest appearance maker in the first leg, and will be hoping to be selected by Rafa Benitez to play his part in helping the Blues into the next round.

"Steaua are a good team," he told Chelsea's official website. "They are technically good on the ball, which most European teams are once you get to this stage of a competition, and it will be a tough game, as simple as that.

"It was a very difficult pitch out there and our pitch will be better.

"The fact we didn't score an away goal is going to make it a difficult night, it will be on a bit of knife edge, but we have to believe we have the character and ability to turn it around."

Team News:

Fernando Torres is expected to return up front, in place of cup-tied striker Demba Ba, while Chelsea captain John Terry is also set to be recalled by Rafa Benitez to the heart of the Blues' defence.

Impressive performances from John Obi Mikel and Eden Hazard should earn them a place in the starting line-up tonight, with Frank Lampard and Victor Moses likely to drop to the bench.

Predicted Chelsea starting XI:

Cech; Azpilicueta, Cahill, Terry, Cole; Ramires, Mikel; Hazard, Mata, Oscar; Torres.

 

Topics:
#Europa League
#Chelsea
Flag article