Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Champions League Semi Final - Atletico Madrid v Chelsea

Chelsea travel to Madrid to take on Athletico in the first leg of Champions League Semi Final tonight, in a game which kicks off at 19.45 and is being shown live on itv.

While the hosts are favourites to take a lead to Stamford Bridge, both sides are the same price to qualify for the final while they are outsiders to lift the trophy with the other two semi-finalists, Bayern Munich (6/4) and Real Madrid (11/4) favoured.

The two sides have experienced contrasting build ups to tonight's clash, with Atletico maintaining their place at the top of La Liga with an eighth successive victory, while the Blues’ title hopes were all but ended with a 2-1 at home defeat to Sunderland.

Jose Mourinho’s men are now considered 28/1 outsiders for the Premier League while Diego Simeone’s side are odds-on favourites to be crowned Spanish champions.

Samuel Eto'o will miss the game with a knee injury. He did not travel to Spain and although he o scored Chelsea's goal in their 2-1 defeat by Sunderland on Saturday, he was substituted after 74 minutes.

However, Eden Hazard has trained following a calf problem that has kept him out of action for nearly two weeks. The Belgium winger, 23, suffered the injury during the early stages of Chelsea's quarter-final victory over Paris St-Germain on 8 April and has not played since. Petr Cech missed the Sunderland game - Jose Mourinho's first home defeat in 78 Premier League games as Chelsea manager - through illness, but is expected to be well enough for the match in the Vicente Calderon Stadium after training as normal.

Right-back Branislav Ivanovic is suspended, while midfielders Nemanja Matic and Mohamed Salah are cup-tied.

Atletico are free to select goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who is on loan from Chelsea.

Diego Costa, leads the first goalscorer betting having netted 34 times in all competitions this season for Athletico, and is on offer at 4/1 while in the absence of Samuel Eto'o, Fernando Torres is considered the Blues’ biggest goal threat and is quoted at 9/1 to score first.

On the result of tonight's match, Athletico are quoted at 5/6 while Chelsea are 4/1, with the draw on the night at 5/2.

(Odds are supplied by skybet and are subject to change) 
As usual, you will be able to bet live in play by clicking the link.

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