Atletico Madrid vs Chelsea
The Champions League returned to our screens on Tuesday evening.
There were two ties taking place on the day, one of which saw Chelsea face off with Atletico Madrid in Budapest.
Just a month or so ago, Atletico would have been viewed as the clear favourites for this game.
However, though Diego Simeone’s side are still sat top of La Liga, their form has dipped off a fair bit of late.
The Spaniard’s squad has also been hit with Covid-19 and injuries, seeing players such as Joao Felix, Yannick Carrasco and Thomas Lemar sidelined. And though most have since returned to action, we are now well aware of what impact the virus can have on player’s ability to return to their peak fitness.
As for Chelsea, they have looked a much-improved side under the guidance of Thomas Tuchel, though their ability to carve out, and then finish, clear-cut chances has been slightly questionable under the German.
Regardless, an interesting affair was widely predicted as Atletico looked to knockout an English side at the last-16 stage for the second year in a row, with the Spaniard’s of course seeing off Liverpool at this point last year.
Mount to miss second leg vs Atletico
At present, the score remains at 0-0, with Atletico having sat very deep throughout much of the first half.
Chelsea have dominated the ball, but as if often the case with the Blues in recent weeks, have done very little with it.
It was action inside the opening two minutes, though, that has proved to be one of the major talking points in the first 45 so far.
Ahead of kick-off on Tuesday, it was revealed that a quartet of Chelsea players were a yellow card away from missing the return leg in three weeks’ time.
Said players were Mason Mount, Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic and Hakim Ziyech.
Jorginho, Kovacic, Mount and Ziyech are one booking away from a suspension.
— Nizaar Kinsella (@NizaarKinsella) February 23, 2021
Three of those players – Mount, Kovacic and Jorginho – were in from the off on Tuesday. And it took Mason Mount less than two minutes to pick up a booking after bringing down an advancing Joao Felix.
As a result, Mount, who has been a key figure since Tuchel’s arrival, is now suspended for the second leg.