Chelsea 8/1 To Overturn Real Madrid Deficit in Champions League

Bookies are prepared to offer big odds on Chelsea putting together a comeback at the Bernabeu, where in-form Karim Benzema is the man to watch.

Chelsea 8/1 To Overturn Real Madrid Deficit in Champions League

Given the ease at which Chelsea dumped out Real Madrid in last season’s Champions League semi-final, it’s somewhat surprising to see betting apps write off their chances of doing so again on Tuesday night.

The Blues trail the La Liga leaders 3-1 from the first leg at Stamford Bridge, but after bouncing back from two shock home defeats with a 6-0 away win at Southampton on Saturday Thomas Tuchel’s side may have restored confidence.

The embarrassing 4-1 home loss to Brentford was followed up with the 3-1 defeat to Madrid, who had the impressive Karim Benzema to thank for putting one foot in the semis.

But is it all done and dusted already or do Chelsea have hope? William Hill, 888 and Unibet all go 8/1 on the Blues turning things around to advance, while other top betting sites such as Ladbrokes and Coral are more convinced, going 11/2.

Former Chelsea midfielder Emmanuel Petit doesn’t see any reason why his old club can’t pull themselves back into the Champions League tie, but only if they show their true colours in Madrid.

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“In recent years we’ve seen so many turnarounds so you never know in football,” Petit told bookmakers.co.uk.

“We saw the wrong face of Chelsea in the first leg and I’m pretty sure we’ll see a different mentality from them in the Bernabeu. They know what they have to do.

“Madrid went through against Paris Saint-Germain having played well for only 25 minutes over the two legs.

“The best team didn’t qualify from that tie and Chelsea can also look back on last year’s semi-final with Madrid when they qualified for the final without any real trouble.

“Of course, it’s Real Madrid, who have all the history and with Karim Benzema they can score against any opponents. But I’m sure Chelsea have the ability to score goals over there too.

“A two-goal winning margin will take it to extra-time and Chelsea can do that, but it will depend how they can perform on the night. I’m very confident the real Chelsea will show up in the return leg.”

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Real Madrid vs Chelsea: Benzema Odds

Unsurprisingly, Benzema heads the first goal market with both established and new bookmakers offering around 7/2 on the Frenchman breaking the deadlock.

The veteran forward has notched a hat-trick in each of his last two Champions League games and Paddy Power are offering 25/1 for a third in succession.

Benzema is in the form of his life this season, but even though he’s in the twilight years of his career, Petit is not taken aback by his compatriot’s peak form.

“I’m not surprised by the levels Karim Benzema has reached at this stage of his career,” he said.

“Staying at one of the biggest clubs in the world for more than 10 years and all the stiff competition for places he’s faced in that time has got him to where he is.

“Over the years, they’ve all come and gone but he’s still there and he’s having the best years of his career. At 34 years old he’s in the best shape I’ve ever seen him and we saw that abdominal strength he’s been working on with the two headers he scored at Stamford Bridge.

“He’s the leader of this Real Madrid team and he’s the main threat for Chelsea.”

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Who Will Be Next Chelsea Owners?

Meanwhile, off the field, the club remains in limbo following the UK government’s sanctioning of Roman Abramovich, with fans and players still none the wiser as to who will take over the club going forward.

However, Petit insists the circus surrounding the club can not be to blame for the team’s recent home collapses against Brentford and Madrid.

“There are a lot of questions around the club,” he said. “Who’s going to be the next owner? Can Chelsea compete in the next transfer market?

“The situation with how Chelsea is being run is not the perfect environment and a few players may be worried because they have no idea what’s going on with their future.

“It can have an impact on their performances, but it would be minimal.

“If the club fell down tomorrow, the players’ lives would not be impacted too much because they can sign for other clubs. It’s the non-playing staff at the club I’m more worried about because their jobs are in danger.”

Larry Tanenbaum, the chairman of the NBA, is the latest name being linked with a consortium of businessmen interested in buying Chelsea, one of several interested parties.

As a follower of Chelsea’s fortunes, former midfielder Petit is not reading too much into their new prospective owners – his wish for the club’s future is plain and simple.

“There are so many different people linked with taking over the club but I don’t know anything about them,” he said. “For sure, they have money, but will they invest it in the squad like Roman Abramovich did?

“I want Chelsea to be able to continue doing what they’re doing – competing in Europe and for domestic titles, that’s my only demand of the next owners of the club.”