The Champions League is back and the reigning winners kick off proceedings with a home match against Zenit in Group H
The tie will kickoff at 20:00 on Tuesday, 14th September in Stamford Bridge with Polish official Bartosz Frankowski in charge.
Chelsea seems to be getting better and better with each passing week. In their most recent game against Aston Villa, they underperformed but managed to win 3-0 with star Romelu Lukaku getting a brace.
This good run of form sees them sitting in joint first place with Man United and Liverpool. One worry that the side has is that this game comes in the middle of an important week where they face Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.
Zenit can be a formidable side on their day, they are the clear leaders in the Russian Premier League after seven games. They still remain unbeaten since the start of their preseason matches, making an 11-game run.
Their squad includes some familiar faces with former Liverpool defender Dejan Lovren likely to start and striker Artem Dzyuba a major part of Russia’s World Cup 2018 run.
The two sides have not faced each other in recent history so it will be a new experience for the opposing clubs.
Bartosz Frankowski from Poland will referee Chelsea vs Zenit.
– 1 UCL Game in his career- 6 Yellow Cards. #CFC #UCL pic.twitter.com/EouIJ7WEwf
— CFCDaily (@CFCDaily) September 12, 2021
Predicted Starting 11s
Predicted Starting Team
Mendy (GK), Azpilicueta, Christensen, Chalobah, Alonso, Jorginho, Kovacic, James, Mount, Ziyech, Lukaku.
Zenit St Petersburg
Predicted Starting Team
Kerzhakov (GK), Santos, Rakitskiy, Lovren, Karavaev, Wendel, Barrios, Kuzyaev, Malcom, Dzyuba, Azmoun
Two names more known in the Zenit team is former Liverpool defender Lovren and former Barca winger Malcom. Sardar Azmoun Iranian forward and Russian midfielder Aleksandr Yerokhin look to be their danger men this season.
Zenit deploy a traditional 4.4.2 and a 184.108.40.206 pic.twitter.com/v9lgYM0buE
— Słipping Jimmÿ (@LUDA26191) September 13, 2021
Zenit St Petersburg 16/1
It is next to impossible to bet against the reigning club world champions in their first match at home against a team from a much smaller league.
Zenit may be the best that the Russian league can offer but they will really need to play out of their skins to compete with an in-form Chelsea team.
Expect the game to end 3-0 to the Blues.
Young Boys v Manchester United
Barcelona v Bayern Munich
Chelsea v Zenit
Villarreal v Atalanta
Inter v Real Madrid
Liverpool v AC Milan
Manchester City v RB Leipzig
Atletico Madrid v Porto
Champions League week has arrived.#UCL pic.twitter.com/xRfgRGkaT6
— bet365 (@bet365) September 13, 2021