Chelsea might want to pull off a well-known Champions League comeback within the second leg of their quarter-final showdown with Actual Madrid after struggling a 2-0 defeat on the Bernabeu on Wednesday.
Karim Benzema opened the scoring within the first half along with his twentieth aim in opposition to English opposition and Frank Lampard’s aspect have been pressured to face up to an enormous quantity of strain in opposition to the reigning holders.
The competition was extra evenly poised within the second interval however a pink card for Ben Chilwell noticed the momentum swing again in direction of Actual, with Marco Asensio doubling the hosts’ benefit quarter-hour later, they usually now take a wholesome result in Stamford Bridge subsequent week.
Chelsea got loads of room to counter-attack into early on on the Bernabeu and Joao Felix was performed clear by way of inside the primary jiffy, although fluffed his traces. The failure to capitalise on the house afforded to them would rapidly come again to hang-out the guests.
Within the twenty first minute, Dani Carvajal clipped a beautiful go in behind Chelsea’s defence for the vigorous Vinicius Junior, whose volley was solely palmed into the trail of Benzema who poked into an empty internet from shut vary.
The west Londoners had a chance to revive parity virtually instantly afterwards following a depraved supply into the field from Reece James, however Raheem Sterling’s flick was nicely saved by Thibaut Courtois at his close to submit.
Immediately the match was changing into a drawn out, end-to-end affair and Vinicius was inflicting havoc; an early ball launched the Brazilian on the half-way line and he drove into the field, jinking previous Wesley Fofana earlier than seeing a dinked effort cleared off the road by Thiago Silva.
Actual had additional probabilities earlier than the half-time break, with Benzema, Rodrygo and Federico Valverde all stinging the palms of Kepa Arrizabalaga, and Lampard may have been glad to make it to half-time just one aim down after going through eight pictures on course.
Chelsea made a promising begin to the second half, with Felix rifling an effort in direction of aim from lengthy vary, although they have been almost undone by a protracted kick from Courtois which pressured Kalidou Koulibaly to make a superb restoration problem – although he injured himself within the course of and was withdrawn shortly afterwards.
Vinicius, in the meantime, was persevering with to terrorise James and one other fleet-footed dribble noticed the ball ultimately laid off to Luka Modric who was inches away from discovering the highest nook.
Chelsea’s process was made even tougher shortly earlier than the hour-mark when Rodrygo was cynically pulled again by Chilwell when clear by way of, with the left-back proven a straight pink card.
The match then grew to become an train in harm limitation, with Lampard changing his two attackers with Trevoh Chalobah and Kai Havertz.
The Actual crowd have been sounding a bit of stressed as Chelsea retreated into their very own half following the sending off, however the Bernabeu erupted within the 74th minute when substitute Marco Asensio collected Vinicius’ pull-back and fizzed a left-footed effort into the underside nook that was too sturdy for Kepa.
Carlo Ancelotti’s aspect smelt blood now – and an opportunity to kill of the tie – however Chelsea managed to forestall the competition from turning right into a rout.
Benzema should have put the tie out of sight late on however headed over from shut vary with the aim gaping, whereas Mason Mount was in disbelief when Antonio Rudiger managed to dam his goal-bound effort within the dying seconds.
As issues stand, Chelsea will nonetheless imagine they’ll flip the tie round, although they’ve now gone six hours in all competitions with out scoring.