Schalke vs Chelsea team news: Jose Mourinho names same side who beat West Brom on Saturday

A win will see Chelsea finish as group leaders

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The Independent Online

Jose Mourinho, knowing a win will guarantee Chelsea passage to the Champions League knock-out stages as a seeded team, has selected his strongest XI for tonight’s match against Schalke 04 in Germany. Chelsea will field an XI unchanged from the comfortable 2-0 win against West Bromwich Albion on Saturday which extended their unbeaten start to the season to 18 games.

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Mourinho would like to settle the issue tonight because Chelsea’s final group game, at home to Sporting, comes in the middle of a busy period of matches. Saturday’s match at Sunderland begins a period of six matches in 18 days with further Premier League fixtures against Spurs, Newcastle and Hull, and, in the Capital One Cup, a trip to Derby County.

The Portuguese said: “We have so many match in December, if we can avoid a crucial match and that pressure it would be very good for us.”

A scoring draw, of 2-2 or higher, will also send Chelsea through as Schalke drew 1-1 at Stamford Bridge - on the head-to-heads Chelsea would thus finish above Schalke on away goals. Any other result and Chelsea’s progress would depend on the result of the Sporting-Maribor game in Lisbon.

Schalke (4-1-4-1): Fahrmann; Uchida, Felipe Santana, Neustadter, Howedes; Kirchhoff; Choupo-Moting, Hoger, Boateng, Aogo; Huntelaar.

Chelsea (4-2-3-1): Courtois; Ivanovic, Terry, Cahill, Azpilicueta; Fabregas, Matic; Willian, Oscar, Hazard; Diego Costa.

Referee: J Eriksson (Sweden)

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