FULL TIME: Chelsea win!
90+4min: GOALLLL EMERSON! Chelsea make a double change to waste some time, and Emerson promptly scores on a counter! 2-0, CHELSEA!
90+2min: Mendy makes a big save as Felix finds a hopeful long ball forward, loses Azpi and Zouma, turns and shoots. Chelsea clear the corner.
90min: Mendy alert as Llorente gets behind Alonso, and Dembele puts the rebound well wide. At the other end, Alonso looks for Havertz with a low ball. Atleti clear. 5 minutes added on.
89min: Kante creates a counter all by himself as Atleti don’t even bother chasing. It’s 3-v-2, but Hudson-Odoi can’t find Pulisic.
88min: Pulisic tries to get past Hermoso, can’t. Atleti still technically in it.
86min: Pulisic tries to find James, but Atleti intercept. Chelsea win it back and this time James looks for Pulisic, but Gimenez makes a great clearance.
84min: Hudson-Odoi, just on, takes a low shot after a pass from Kovacic on a 4-v-4 break. Oblak not too bothered.
81min: Atleti corner, inswinging by Lemar. Havertz clears at the near post for another. Lemar takes again this time short, but the referee blows his whistle and shows a red card to Savic! Rudiger on the ground. Replays show there’s not that much in it, but Toni wins that one.
80min: Felix draws a foul from Kovacic, central. Lemar chips into the box, Chelsea able to clear at the second time of asking. But not far as Atleti come again. Felix finds space to shoot after a clear touch and turn, but Chelsea able to deflect it wide for a corner.
77min: Pulisic on for Ziyech in Chelsea’s first change.
76min: Atleti able to get into the area this time, with Felix hammering a shot at goal from a wide angle. Mendy blocks and Kante completes the clearance.
75min: James goes on a mazy run before playing wide to Ziyech. He spots a man in the area, but gets his right-footed cross all wrong, much to his own dismay.
73min: Kante turns Koke, who decides against a challenge. But his through ball for Werner is a touch too late, so he stops his run. Ziyech presses to win the ball back, but his pass in towards Havertz is intercepted. Havertz charges down the clearance and blocks it and Chelsea almost get lucky before Atleti able to hack it clear.
72min: Koke hacks down Kovacic in the middle of the pitch. Obvious yellow.
70min: Lemar on for Atleti. It’s all Atleti at the moment, though Chelsea staying fairly comfortable.
68min: Zouma playing on...
66min: Zouma’s down with an apparent head injury, after a clash of heads with Dembele in an aerial duel. Referee stops play...
65min: Rudiger hacks one clear, then holds the ball well near the corner flag to win a free kick. Atleti turning up the pressure.
63min: Atleti corner, Trippier takes. Chelsea clear.
62min: Atleti foray forward, with Correa putting in a low cross. Azpi makes a great clearance just ahead of Dembele in the six-yard box. Chelsea counter quickly, with Werner going at it alone. Can’t quite get past Gimenez however, before wildly shooting over the bar, much to the dismay of Tuchel on the touchline.
60min: Loose touch from Gimenez; Havertz on it in a flash. Gimenez dives in and takes him out. Yellow only.
59min: Correa on for Suarez as Atleti keep searching for solutions.
56min: Ziyech tries another shot from the top of the box, slightly disguised. Oblak helps it over the bar. Ziyech takes the outswinging corner again, Dembele beats Zouma in the air to clear.
55min: Havertz pulling the string again, playing in Werner. His cross is blocked for a corner. Ziyech takes, outswinging, all the way to James at the top of the box on the far side. James goes for the spectacular volley, but doesn’t make perfect contact and Atleti can clear.
54min: Dembele on for Carrasco for Atleti, but it’s Werner who’s in behind again. This time he’s forced wide, but he does find Havertz at the top of the box. His ball across is poor however, and Atleti able to cut it out.
53min: Havertz picks looks for Werner with a good cross. Atleti half clear, but only as far as Ziyech at the top of the box. He sits on defender down, but a second one blocks his shot anyway. Rudiger pumps the long rebound towards goal, and he does miss by much from 30 yards.
51min: Havertz draws another foul in the center at the start of a counter. This time the card does come out, for Saul.
49min: Chelsea try to counter through Havertz, but he’s pulled to the ground in the center circle by Hermoso. No card.
48min: Ziyech’s turn to release Werner behind the line. No support arriving in the middle this time, so Werner takes the shot and it’s not a bad effort, but Oblak makes a good save. Atleti able to clear the subsequent corner.
47min: Azpi chips down the line for Werner. He catches up to it and plays it back to James, who puts in a good cross. Ziyech can’t quite get to it however.
SECOND HALF: Having vanquished Renan Lodi, Atleti bring on Hermoso to try to contain Reece James. Chelsea restart proceedings.
HALF-TIME: No added on time. Chelsea lead, 1-0!
45min: Kovacic tries a first-time shot from 20 yards, central, from Kante’s square ball, but it spins wide of the post with Oblak at full stretch.
43min: Rudiger still forward from the corner, tries a shot/cross from an extreme angle. Hilariously wide of the mark.
42min: Ziyech and James combine again well on the right. James puts in another good cross. Werner overruns it. Havertz almost gets to the loose ball, but Gimenez able to put it out for a corner. Havertz claims a foul, but the referee unmoved. Chelsea’s corner is punched out by Oblak.
40min: Alonso and Havertz combine well, but the latter’s short ball across is gathered by Oblak before Werner could get there.
39min: Llorente with a nice cross from the right, across the six. Fortunately no Atleti player there to take advantage. Atleti do get the ball back and Felix tries a shot from the top of the box. It deflects off Rudiger but Mendy still able to catch it.
38min: Joao Felix tries to make something happen on the left, but Azpi and Kante do well to prevent any danger.
37min: James puts in a great ball from the right, Havertz gets a head to it, but not enough to redirect it. Chelsea come again, with another great cross from James. Atleti can’t clear initially, but Alonso just step slow to the loose ball.
34min: GOALLLLLL!!! ZIYECHHHHHHH!! Chelsea counter thanks to Werner and Havertz, with the former forcing the loose ball and the latter releasing the former down the left. Werner puts a perfect ball across for Ziyech, whose finish isn’t great but just sneaks by Oblak’s foot. 1-0, CHELSEA!!
32min: Chelsea with a chance to counter, led by Werner. He plays it back to Havertz in support, but his touch is poor and the chance’s gone.
31min: Renan Lodi next into the book for a late tackle on James.
30min: Havertz into the book as Savic heads his elbow instead of the ball.
29min: Trippier chips into the area from the halfway line, Suarez looks to be behind the defense, but misses his touch. He may have been offside.
26min: Azpi slightly undersells a pass back to Mendy and Carrasco tries to get it to. Azpi briefly puts an arm around his waist, and Carrasco goes down theatrically. We play on, but then VAR briefly reviews as well. We play on still, fortunately, not that there was much in it at all.
23min: Rudiger and Suarez reacquaint themselves with a shoulder-to-shoulder challenge right on the line. Suarez goes down like a sack of potatoes, then tries to dive in front of Rudiger when he doesn’t hear a whistle. Here we go then.
21min: Suarez finds the ball in the area, but Zouma is tight to him and wins a goal kick.
20min: James’ next cross is aimed towards the far post, but Trippier able to get high enough to prevent it from reaching Alonso. Chelsea win it back with the high press, Zouma stepped all the way up into the final third. James has space to shoot this time, but he hammers it well over the bar.
19min: James puts in a good cross from the right, across the top of the box. Ziyech and Werner seem to get in each other’s way, before Werner finds the ball again and shoots. It appears to deflect wide off a defender, but the referee gives it as a goal kick?
18min: Joao Felix goes on a run through the center, bamboozling Rudiger among others, but Kante gets a toe in at the last second, just as he shaped to shoot.
16min: Azpi aims one of his classic crosses towards the far post. Alonso’s beaten in the air, but Havertz able to press and win a corner. Ziyech takes, outswinging, Rudiger arrives like a freight train, but Suarez able to clear just ahead of him.
15min: Ziyech rescues a poor first-time ball from Kante in the center by winning a foul off Saul. Chelsea generally keeping possession quite well however, and playing mostly in Atletico’s half.
13min: Chelsea passing slickly around the penalty area, both flanks, but cannot find a final ball. Ziyech almost gets in, but is crowded out.
10min: Chelsea unable to pass out from the back this time, but Kante wins the ball in midfield and have a chance to counter. Havertz sends Alonso down the left channel, but his shot is poor and wide of the mark from a decent angle with Trippier in close attention.
8min: Chelsea press and Kante intercepts a crossfield ball, but he can’t find a space to shoot and Atleti force a goal kick.
7min: Chelsea pass it around well on the right flank, but cannot create a crossing opportunity. Ziyech and James eventually get their signals crossed, and Atleti have a goal kick.
5min: Ziyech plays James down the right, his low cross is cleared for a throw. James takes the throw, gets it back, but see another cross cleared for a throw. Another cross is the result from that, this one blocked for a corner. James takes that as well, outswinging towards the penalty spot, but no Chelsea in the vicinity and it’s easily dealt with by Atleti.
4min: Renan Lodi gets a first-time shot on target as he bombs forward, but Mendy’s alert to it to catch at his near post. Atleti out of the blocks with purpose, intent, and aggression.
3min: Atleti pass through on their right, but Suarez’s return ball is intercepted by Alonso i the area.
2min: Zouma steps up but misses his interception and Atleti are in business. Zouma eventually makes a good block to avert any further danger. At the other end, Werner has a chance to chase a ball, but he’s just unable to keep it in, though he vehemently disagrees with the referee’s call.
1min: Werner starts as the most central of the three Chelsea attackers, with Havertz left and Ziyech right.
KICK-OFF: The teams are out, after a slight delay as Atleti made the trek in from the Health Club. Chelsea in classic all-blue with white socks, Atleti with their usual red and white stripes. The anthem rings out in the empty stadium, save for all the banners, and then we’re off. Atleti get us underway, with Clive Tyldesdesley and former Chelsea goalkeeper Rob Green on the CBS commentary.
The lights are on, the anthem is queued up, still no fans, but that’s just how 2020-21 is. Chelsea have a simple task at hand, one that will be anything but simple to accomplish. The 1-0 away leg win gives us an advantage, but anything can happen against one of the best teams in Europe who are now full strength.
Tuchel of course unveils a lineup that probably no one expected, including no Christensen (injured?) and Ziyech getting another shot alongside newly minted striker Kai Havertz. The bench is looking a bit empty with all the injuries and suspensions...
UPDATE: Christensen has been ill, and not in a good way.
Here we go!
Chelsea starting lineup (3-4-3):
Mendy | Rüdiger, Zouma, Azpilicueta (c) | Alonso, Kanté, Kovačić, James | Werner, Havertz, Ziyech
Substitutes from: Arrizabalaga, Caballero, Chilwell, Emerson, Gilmour, Pulisic, Anjorin, Hudson-Odoi, Giroud
Atlético Madrid starting lineup (4-4-2):
Oblak | Renan Lodi, Giménez, Savić, Trippier | Carrasco, Saúl Ñíguez, Koke (c), Llorente | Suárez, João Félix
Substitutes from: Grbić, San Román, Kondogbia, Torreira, Correa, Lemar, Herrera, Felipe, Dembélé, Vitolo, Hermoso, Vrsaljko
Date / Time: Wednesday, March 17, 2021, 20.00 GMT; 4pm EDT; 1:30am IST (next day)
Venue: Stamford Bridge, SW6
Referee: Daniele Orsato (on pitch); Massimiliano Irrati (VAR)
On TV: BT Sport 2 (UK); UniMás, TUDN (USA); Sony TEN 2 (India); SuperSport Máximo 1, Canal+ Sport 3 (NGA); elsewhere
Streaming: BT Sport Live (UK); Paramount+, Univision Now, TUDNxtra (USA); Sony LIV (India); DStv Now (NGA) — CBS All Access is now called Paramount+, which is the same not-great thing, just with more mediocre content, and with football (and sports in general) even harder to find on it. Here’s SB Nation’s old CBS-AA affiliate link, which should still work. We also have a Fubo TV affiliate link, if you’re so inclined.
Be excellent to each other, and party on, dudes!