…… Lampard says anything is possible with the Bridge behind us
Frank Lampard insists our Champions League quarter-final with Real Madrid isn’t over as Chelsea look to turn the tie around with the help of what he is sure will be a fantastic atmosphere created by the supporters at Stamford Bridge.
We suffered a 2-0 defeat in the first leg of this Champions League quarter-final in Spain last week, but now it is Chelsea’s turn to enjoy home advantage as Frank Lampard prepares his team for a massive game at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday evening.
While our caretaker manager is under no illusions about the difficulty of the task facing us, he has also been around football and Chelsea long enough to know there is always a chance of producing something special.
‘Anything is possible in football and there’s no doubt that we’re a competitive team and we deserve to be here in this stage of the competition,’ said Lampard.
‘We also understand that the opponent is really high-level, but if we get things right, if we work hard, if we do the right things in the game, then anything is possible.’
Lampard expects passionate support
Frank is certain that his players will be welcomed onto the pitch with a fantastic atmosphere at Stamford Bridge for this huge tie, as he has experienced on so many memorable European nights with the Blues. However, he knows that is just the start and is looking on his players to pick up the baton and give the fans something to cheer about.
‘I’ve got no doubt the atmosphere will be positive. When I say that, I’m talking about the lead-up to the game and the start of the game, the rest is a little bit down to us as a team to play with a real desire and know-how to turn the tie around.
‘I’ve been here too many times at this level of game at Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on an evening midweek Champions League knock-out game, so I understand that the atmosphere is going to be great.
‘Then it’s up to us to tap into that early in the game and make sure we engage the crowd throughout because they can help us when we’re at home. That’s why this two-legged competition is the best out there. I’m confident in that, we just need to play our part.’
Lampard’s view on Real Madrid
Our caretaker manager also cast his eye over our opponents and explained why he believes the reigning European champions are such a consistently difficult side to come up against.
‘Looking from the outside, firstly they have a great coach in Carlo Ancelotti, who I understand very well from working with him. So I think he needs to take full credit in this moment because what we saw last season in their run to the final was an amazing resilience that he led.
‘Then what’s very visible from the outside is a core of players that have been there for a very long time, playing at the highest level year after year. They have talent and work ethic and leadership skills and they drive the group. I’m talking obviously about Modric, Kroos, Benzema and others. They have a very good recipe for a team that will be successful over a period of time.
‘They also have individual talent that can win a game in any moment, whether they are with or without control. Those special players at the top end of the pitch at this level can be absolutely crucial to success and they have those. So they have a very good overall unit to have the success that they’ve had for so long.’
Chelsea vs Real Madrid injury list
Kalidou Koulibaly had already been ruled out of this game by Frank Lampard after going off with a hamstring issue in the first leg. Armando Broja remains the one player on the long-term injury list, as his rehabilitation from cruciate ligament damage continues.
Real Madrid remain without left-back Ferland Mendy, who hasn’t featured since the middle of March due to a calf injury, but otherwise Carlo Ancelotti expects to have a fully-fit squad at his disposal.
Chelsea vs Real Madrid suspension
Ben Chilwell will miss this game as he serves a one-match Champions League ban due to the straight red card he received during the first leg in Spain.
In the Champions League, three yellow cards, as well as following any subsequent odd-numbered caution (fifth, seventh, ninth, etc), will result in a one-match-suspension in the competition. All yellow cards expire on completion of the quarter-finals and are not carried forward to the semi-finals.
Champions League booking list
Enzo 4 (already served a suspension with Benfica), Mount 3 (already served suspension against Dortmund), Gallagher 2, James 2, Kepa 2, Koulibaly 2, Kovacic 2, Mudryk 2, Thiago Silva 2, Chilwell 1, Cucurella 1, W. Fofana 1, Sterling 1, Ziyech 1
Chelsea vs Real Madrid referee and VAR
Referee: Daniele Orsato
VAR: Massimiliano Irrati
- Follow the game live via our Match Centre
- Where to watch the action
- Behind the scenes at our last training session before Real Madrid