NK Maribor vs Chelsea: Champions League match preview

A look ahead to Wednesday’s Champions League fixture at the Ljudski vrt

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The Independent Football

Chelsea will be looking to extend not just their unbeaten run in the league but in all competitions when they face NK Maribor on Wednesday night.

Just under two weeks ago the Blues swept aside a very poor Maribor, beating them 6-0. With statistically the best attack in the Premier League it looks as though there will be no easing up.

Especially given that if Jose Mourinho’s side win on Wednesday, they’ll need just a point to qualify in the worst possible scenario.

This game could see Diego Costa rested as he makes a slow return to first team action and the reinstatement of Didier Drogba up front who before the game against QPR had scored three in three starts.

Maribor come into the game in poor form, with just two wins from their last five outings, losing the rest.

Despite having the worst goal difference in Group G, they are second bottom above Sporting. Drawing against the Portuguese side and Schalke still offers them a chance of qualifying, even if they lose. However, with Schalke in a stronger position, Maribor will not want it to go down to goal difference and so a draw would be a great result.

KICK-OFF: Wednesday, 7.45pm

PAST THREE MEETINGS…

Chelsea 6 (Remy, Drogba, Terry, Viler og, Hazard 2) NK Maribor 0, Champions League, October 2014

STATS…

NK Maribor currently lie fourth in the Slovenian league after 15 games, only the top spot gets a Champions League qualifying place.

Alongside Southampton, Chelsea have the joint best goal difference in the league. They have however scored the most goals with 26.

Eden Hazard has scored three goals in his last four games, two coming against NK Maribor.

NK Maribor’s 18-year-old Luke Zahovic is the top scorer in the league with eight goals.

 

ODDS…

Chelsea to win: 1.28

NK Maribor to win: 12.0

Draw: 5.0

TV: Live on Sky Sports 1 at 7.45pm, highlights on Sky Sports 5 at 10.00pm.

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