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Champions League: Pulisic confident ahead of Real Madrid clash

Chelsea hosts Real Madrid at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday to kick off the first leg of their Champions League quarterfinals, and Pulisic isn’t concerned.

Jennifer Bubel

In their first leg of the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals, Chelsea will host Real Madrid at Stamford Bridge. The game begins Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET. You can follow along with all the action live right here on AS USA.

Chelsea won their game against Lyon in the first knockout round, 4-1 and finished second in Group H after losing to Juventus, with a 4-1-1 record. Now, they sit in third place on the EPL table.

Real Madrid won their game against PSG in the first knockout round after a 1-0 loss in the first round and 3-1 win in the second. They are at the top of the LaLiga standings.

Chelsea attacker Christian Pulisic was on the Chelsea team that beat Real Madrid in the semi-finals last year and went on to beat Porto and claim the Champions League title.

“We should definitely take confidence. We obviously got a good result last year and hope to do the same this year,” said Pulisic. “It’s a big team, never going to be easy - Champions League knockout game and it won’t be easy, but given we beat them and won it all last season we should feel confident, and that’s our mindset going into it.”

It’s expected that Chelsea will start midfielder Mason Mount and forward Kai Havertz and Real Madrid will be led by forward Karim Benzema, who leads LaLiga in scoring.

Chelsea will be playing without Ben Chilwell or Callum Hudson-Odoi, both out with injuries. Real Madrid will be without forward Eden Hazard as he recovers from surgery or Luka Jovic, who’s out with an ankle issue.

This season may be a bit different from last season since Real Madrid has a new coach with Carlo Ancelotti. However, his participation for Wednesday’s game was a bit rocky until recently. He tested positive for covid-19 last week but tested negative on his PCR test Tuesday. It’s now been confirmed that he will fly to England to attend and manage the game from the touchline.

“I think there’s obviously some new players, new coach, new system they might play. There are some similarities in the team,” said Pulisic. “I’m not too sure. We are continuing to look at their team and figure out the best way to play tomorrow, we will continue to talk about it and I think we will be prepared for what they have.”


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