Top meets bottom in Group E as Chelsea host Rennes at Stamford Bridge in 2020-21 UEFA Champions League.
Victory would see Chelsea stay top otherwise they need Sevilla to not better their result in order to remain in pole position to qualify as Group E winners, whilst Rennes know that a win could potentially see them climb off the foot of the group.
Christian Pulisic is a doubt for Chelsea after suffering “a small sensation in his hamstring…” in warm-up for Saturday’s win at Burnley.
Kepa Arrizabalaga (shoulder) could also feature but Billy Gilmour remains out with a knee injury.
Rennes will be without Eduardo Camavinga due to a thigh injury.
Daniele Rugani (hamstring) and Faitout Maouassa (ankle) are also sidelined.
- This is Chelsea’s first-ever meeting against Rennes in all competitions.
- Chelsea are unbeaten in four of their last five home matches against French opposition (W3, D1, L1).
- Rennes have lost each of two previous away trips against English opposition, losing 1-0 to Aston Villa in 2001 UEFA Intertoto Cup then 3-0 at Arsenal in second leg of their 2018-19 Europa League Round of 16 clash.
Chelsea come into this match off the back of three solid performances across two competitions which all resulted in clean sheets, although they did start slowly at Burnley on Saturday in both halves before hitting their stride, which does offer hope for Rennes if they can start quickly and cause serious problems for the Blues.
Rennes however failed to produce anything of real quality at Sevilla last week and with Chelsea being equally superior if not more dangerous in quality, I reckon that this could be a difficult encounter unless the French team can tighten up their defending in open play as they looked brilliant from set pieces at Sevilla yet left too much spacing when in proper fast paced play.
Do that then Rennes might stand a decent chance of at least a draw but I realistically can see Chelsea dominating this clash en route to an easy win.
Prediction: Chelsea 3-0 Rennes
Result: Chelsea 3-0 Rennes