Chelsea take on the Turkish giants at Stamford Bridge next Wednesday in the last sixteen of the Champions League which Redknapp believes is the Blues’ to lose.
Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has won the Champions League twice with Porto prior to his first spell at Stamford Bridge, Inter Milan following that and, should he win the competition with Chelsea he’d become the first manager in history to win the continent’s most prestigious competition with three different clubs. Furthermore, should he do that this season, he’ll have executed that success all within a decade.
“Jose would obviously love to win it with Chelsea – he’ll play it down, of course he’ll play the underdog, he always does but I expect them to go through against Galatasaray,” explained Redknapp.
The former Liverpool midfielder also noted the tie will see the return to Stamford Bridge of Blues legend Didier Drogba for Olympiakos. The Ivorian was instrumental in Chelsea’s winning of the competition back in 2012 and won three Premier League titles (two under Mourinho), four FA Cups and two League Cups in his eight years with the Blues.
“You can see him [Mourinho] doing a number over on their best player Didier Drogba – before the game he’ll be in the tunnel cuddling him, telling him how good he is and trying to calm him down – making him feel so welcome to the club but knowing deep down he’s getting to him psychologically,” predicted Redknapp.
The 40-year-old pundit also hinted he thinks Chelsea can go all the way and believes the Blues have simply too much quality not to progress through to the quarter finals in April:
“I think that’s an absolute certainty, them beating Galatasaray. They’ve got too much quality in their side for them and, who knows, the longer they can go on, Chelsea can keep going.”
image: © Julian Mason