Chelsea’s first ever meeting with Servette took place nine days ago in Switzerland and ended as Chelsea’s most lopsided win this season in any competition. Now the Swiss champions have to come to London to try to get their first goal, or at least point.
Given how the first match went, neither is expected to happen. Chelsea didn’t just score seven goals — six in the first half — we had 70 per cent of the ball and didn’t face a single shot on target. Surely the game plan from the visitors will be different, now that they have some understanding of what Chelsea want to do.
While that certainly matters, and we probably shouldn’t expect another 7-0, Chelsea are in the best and most consistent form of the season, and are not going to allow Servette an opportunity to rattle any of that.
Date / Time: Thursday, November 18, 2021, 20.00 GMT; 3:00pm EST; 1:30am IST (next day)
Venue: Kingsmeadow, Kingston Upon Thames, UK
Forecast: Partly Cloudy; 56°F/13°C
Streaming: DAZN (globally; bookmark this page as all UWCL matches will be shown live on DAZN’s YouTube page)
Chelsea team news: Forward Pernille Harder and center back Aniek Nouwen are still out as they recover from small muscle injuries/discomfort.
Emma Hayes has expressed concern with the frantic nature of Chelsea’s schedule, and will be looking to prioritize player health, particularly with another match to play in just three days.
“We’ve got a hell of a schedule coming up. We’re used to playing a game every three or four days and have been for a long time now. It is what it is, and I trust the group of players we’ve got that everybody has to be ready for those games because to compete on all fronts, you have to trust the entire bench.
“I had to learn a methodology which is effectively managing the loads of the players depending on where they are. My view on this is that it is the football coach’s job, not sports science people. I don’t just push that off and say ‘you make those decisions’.”
-Emma Hayes; source: BBC Sport
A bit of rotation is therefore expected. Getting the three points will be important, but it wouldn’t be unreasonable to see Bethany England, Drew Spence, Jonna Andersson, Niamh Charles and a few of the other lesser-spotted players to secure them.
Servette team news: The club’s fans provided an incredible atmosphere in the last match, and it was truly brilliant to see that level of support even in such a lopsided match.
And in actual good news for them, they didn’t allow the loss to linger, and five days later defeated Basel (currently fourth in Nationalliga A), 3-0.
Previously: 7-0, including some absolutely deviously constructed goals.