Chelsea couldn’t have hoped for a better Champions League draw this season, and while none of the games will be easy, if they do not qualify they will have only themselves to blame.
German side Schalke have had a less than convincing start to their Bundesliga campaign, winning just one of the first four matches. While Basel and Steaua Bucharest may be Champions League stalwarts, but they shouldn’t pose a significant threat if Jose Mourinho has realistic aspirations of making a hat-trick of successes in this competition.
Every week we will take a look at how Chelsea’s Champions League opponents have fared in their domestic competitions, giving fans a hint of what to expect in the build-up to the matches that start on 18 September.
The German side picked up their first win of the season on Saturday when they beat Bayer Leverkusen 2-0. The result was a shock given Leverkusen’s 100% record up that point, added to the fact that Schalke had picked up just a single point from their opening three games.
A corner turned? They will certainly hope so. The goals came from Marco Hogger and Jefferson Farfan, with the latter shining throughout. And while much of the excitement prior to the match was generated by the signing of Kevin-Prince Boateng, Farfan took the plaudits, setting up the first and scoring the second.
Schalke’s win took them to 13th in the Bundesliga.
FC Basel beat Young Boys 2-1 on Sunday, with all three goals coming in the space of three minutes. Substitute Samuel Afum put Young Boys ahead after 71 minutes, only for the home side to score twice in 60 seconds – first through midfielder Giovanni Sio and then striker Marco Streller.
Basel are currently third in the Swiss league, three points behind Young Boys.
The Romanian side didn’t play this weekend. They are currently fifth in their domestic league, with two games in hand.
image: © achimh