After maintaining their three-point lead at the top of the Premier League table with a routine win at Leicester City on Saturday, in-form Chelsea will shift their focus to prolonging their defence of the Champions League trophy they lifted for the second time last May.
Sitting second in the group behind this week’s opponents, their only defeat so far came in a close-fought encounter at the Allianz Stadium back in September, as a 1-0 Juventus win was secured by Federico Chiesa’s goal at the start of the second half.
Those were the only points dropped by the Blues to date, after an opening win at home to Zenit was followed by dominant victories against Malmo on each of the last two matchdays. Though Thomas Tuchel’s men only prevailed by a single goal in Sweden last time out, they assumed complete control once again, and won the two games by a 5-0 aggregate scoreline.
The Blues’ league form since first disposing of the Allsvenskan champions will give Tuesday’s visitors serious cause for concern too, as they strode to a 7-0 victory over Norwich City and put three past both Newcastle and Leicester.
Those goals have been coming from all quarters of a confident side, as Chelsea’s 30 Premier League strikes this term have been scored by 15 different players.
Tuchel ensures they keep things tight at the back as well, with the capital club having kept six clean sheets in their last eight matches. Not only that, but they are also yet to concede more than once in any game during the 2021-22 campaign.
Such defensive solidity – and a forbiddingly deep squad – means that they will be one of the teams to avoid in the draw for the last 16, should they confirm their place in the coming weeks. With fixtures piling up between here and Christmas, their head coach will want to do so at the first possible opportunity.
Video Links Stream 1 Stream 2 HDStream 3 HDStream 4
In stark contrast to their patchy domestic form, Juventus sit atop Group H with maximum points so far, after they sealed a double over Zenit St Petersburg earlier this month.
Having won their first three fixtures without conceding a goal, the Bianconeri finally succumbed to a Leonardo Bonucci own goal in Turin, but were still able to run out 4-2 winners over the Russian champions. As a result, Juventus will be confirmed in first place if they avoid defeat against Chelsea this week, following improved fortunes in Serie A.
Since his much-heralded return in the summer, Max Allegri has seen his side stumble to defeats against several mid-table teams, such as Sassuolo and Verona, but back-to-back wins either side of the international break have lifted them to seventh in the standings – still well off the Scudetto pace.