Both Chelsea and Napoli won their league games coming into tonights game, whilst resting star players. Cavani was on the bench for Napoli as they beat Cagliari 6-3, whilst Sturridge and Juan Mata were also on the bench as Chelsea rode out a 1-0 victory against Stoke.
They will all undoubtedly return to the line-ups tonight, as Chelsea look to start an attacking line-up, as they will have to turn around a two-goal deficit racked up by their Italian visitors in the first leg.
Cahill and Terry will have their work cut out, and could be the key component, as if they can shut Lavezzi and Cavani out early, they could give their side a great chance to go and create chances, in front of an atmospheric Stamford Bridge.
It is sure to be a match full of goals, as both sides have scored in every single Champions League game so far, with Chelsea taking the lead in all 7 of them, but only winning 3.
However, The Blues must take hope from their home form, where they have won all 3 games in Europe this season, scoring 10 goals and conceding none, although keeping their doors shut at the back against Napoli, is a whole new challenge.
Former Chelsea and Napoli legend, Gianfranco Zola, writing in Il Mattino, sat firmly on the fence for the upcoming clash, “Chelsea might find they have an extra player in midfield, which will give them control of a key area of the pitch.
“Conversely, Napoli will play in the better condition, because they can play on the break and surely this will be a great advantage, especially considering that the two centre backs at Chelsea struggle in large spaces”
An early goal, like Arsenal managed in their tie against Milan, could be key, and disrupt the gameplan of Napoli, who will certainly not be resting on their laurels, and will also be there to win the game.
Nobody truly knows whether Di Matteo will risk playing Torres up front, and may well start with Didier Drogba, who is in great form, unlike his Spanish compatriot, although should Torres break his duck in this game, it could well be worth the wait.
Looking at the betting for the game, I can see there being a ton of goals, which leads me to the following bets.
Chelsea winning at HT – 13/10 – £10
Over 3.5 goals – 6/4 – £4
Drogba to score any time – 11/10 – £5
Cavani to score any time – 11/10 £5
Prediction: Chelsea 3 Napoli 1 (Chelsea to win on penalties)
By Bradley Smith