Coral’s combined Chelsea and PSG starting XI
Chelsea (odds-on at 1/3 to qualify for the quarters) and PSG (12/5) go head-to-head again for the fourth time in two seasons in the Champions League, in what is the highest profile match this week in the competition.
As a result, Coral writers have combined the two teams that are eligible for this last 16 second leg crunch clash, so here is our starting XI…
Goalkeeper: Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea)
The big Belgian superstar stopper may not have been used in the Capital One Cup final against Spurs, as he fights for the number one spot at Stamford Bridge with Petr Cech, but will likely start this match.
Right back: Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea)
Ivanovic is one of two successfully converted Blues full backs in this team, and he is a key player for the west Londoners at the back as well as going forward. The Serb netted in the first leg for his sixth goal of the term, and is 6/1 to net again anytime.
Centre back: John Terry (Chelsea)
Former England skipper Terry may not be getting any younger, but he has had arguably his best season to date and easily gets into this XI.
Centre back: Thiago Silva (PSG)
It would be hard to match a better centre back pairing of Terry and Silva in the world right now, and the Brazilian will be key to stopping Chelsea’s attack.
Left back: Cesar Azpilicueta (Chelsea)
Spaniard Azpilicueta was a right back when he first joined Stamford Bridge, but has thrived out on the left and has often been preferred to Filipe Luis. He gets in ahead of PSG’s Maxwell.
Defensive midfield: Nemanja Matic (Chelsea)
After twisting his ankle celebrating Chelsea’s Capital One Cup victory over Tottenham, Matic returns from domestic suspension, and his displays in front of the defence since he rejoined the blues have been highly hailed.
Centre midfield: Cesc Fabregas (Chelsea)
While Matic covers the midfield area further back on the pitch, magician Fabregas is creator of many of Chelsea’s attacks.
Right wing: Edinson Cavani (PSG)
The tenacious Uruguayan has been linked with the Blues in the past, and gets into our combined team. Cavani was on target in the first leg with a great header, and is priced at 2/1 to net anytime again.
Left wing: Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
Perhaps our first choice name for this XI, the tricky Belgian has a highly impressive 14 goals and 13 assist this season in all competitions, and will continue his telepathic connections with the likes of Fabregas and Diego Costa to try and dismantle PSG.
Striker: Diego Costa (Chelsea)
Brazilian-born Spain international Costa may have saved his goals mainly for the Premier League this season, but Laurent Blanc’s men will still need to be wary of the prolific poacher.
Striker: Zlatan Ibrahimovic (PSG)
The superstar Swede has been in scoring form this season, and netted last time out in Ligue 1 against Lens. He was also on target in the Champions League against his former club Barcelona this term, so back him at at tempting 15/8 to strike against his old boss Jose Mourinho too.