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Soccer Wednesday: Your Running Commentary

DiegoCostaAtleticoMadrid1-ChelseaUCL2014 (Getty)

By RYAN TOLMICH

With Real Madrid already having booked their place in the Champions League final, Cristiano Ronaldo and co. will be joined by either a familiar foe from across town or a legendary former manager, as Atletico Madrid’s trip to Chelsea highlights this Soccer Wednesday.

Fresh off of a monumental 2-0 win over Liverpool, Chelsea will have to once again show off their defensive prowess against the leaders of La Liga. Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho orchestrated a strategic, albeit boring, 0-0 draw in the first leg, giving the Blues a chance to host a game with a trip to the finals on the line.

However, the absence of starting goalkeeper Petr Cech will harm the Blues, while Atletico goalkeeper and Chelsea loanee Thibaut Courtois is set to make his Stamford Bridge debut. It will be a matchup of the competition’s two top defensive teams, as Chelsea’s praise-worthy backline is actually second in goals conceded in this year’s tournament to Atletico.

This afternoon’s Champions League clash isn’t the only tournament action on the schedule, as the Liga MX quarterfinals are also scheduled to get underway. In the day’s first Liguilla matchup, the league’s top attacking side, fourth seeded Santos Laguna, takes on one of Mexico’s more stout defenses, fifth seeded Club America. Joining them in Wednesday’s action will be top seeded Cruz Azul, who take on eight seed Club Leon, who made the field via a Chivas Guadalajara slip up.

If you will be watching today’s action, please feel free to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.

Enjoy the action. (Today’s schedule is after the jump):

2:45pm – Chelsea vs. Atletico Madrid – Fox Sports 1

9:00pm – Gremio vs. San Lorenzo – Fox Deportes

9:00pm – Club America vs. Santos Laguna – Univision

11:00pm – Club Leon vs. Cruz Azul – Telemundo

62 comments
  • reignman

    Of course Chelsea is starting 6 defenders, hope this game is entertaining at least.

    Like

  • Kodi

    Intesting linup selection by Jose. Azpilicueta on the left wing in midfield. Excited to see how Hazard performs tucked in behind Torres. Lets go Blues.

    Like

  • arsenal

    I hope Turan is in the turkey squad against the U.S. he is fun to watch and what a chance for Madrid.

    Like

  • Atletico Man

    The Spanish press is referring to this as Mourinho’s “British Double-Decker Bus.”

    Like

  • reignman

    Lucky for Chelsea there, without that deflection it never goes in. This game actually hasn’t been awful to watch, it may become that now.

    Like

  • Gerard D.

    There it goes for Atletico!

    Now Chelsea have to score again. Can’t refuse to play soccer anymore.

    Like

    • Nate Dollars

      since i’m only following online, can you explain how chelsea scored without playing soccer? also, why haven’t atletico scored 50 goals if chelsea is not playing soccer?

      Like

      • Pete

        The whole chelsea “isn’t playing foorball” and “parking two buses” is lazy analysis.

        Like

      • Increase

        Chelsea is playing a mostly normal game today. You couldn’t say that about the away game in Madrid. I wouldn’t call today parking a bus. Last game. ohhhhh ya was it ever.

        Like

      • arsenal

        Its a strategy, hobestly , and its working. Its obvious Madrid has the better attack players overall, but its been fun to watch. And that should have been a goal for Madrid. Terrible defense by Chelsea just ball watching.

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      • Nate Dollars

        it was a tongue-in-cheek question. i hate these ‘not playing soccer’ comments. they’re moronic. i can only hope those commenters are trying to be antagonistic, rather than them actually believing it.

        Like

      • arsenal

        I Agree with you though. Its frustrating because winning is what matters. We all want attractive football, but sometimes you can’t play it that way.

        Like

      • RB

        Hard to tell which side in this debate the rest of us are more tired of hearing from. Maybe a poll would help.

        Like

      • Nate Dollars

        fair point. i always get more annoyed by the people positing blatantly false statements to advance a biased narrative, but you’re right–that’s just one side of it.

        Like

      • RB

        Well don’t mean to sound overly harsh, and each side has its points. Just surprised that it keeps going on.

        However I guess with the likelihood of the final being a Madrid derby, we probably won’t hear much more of it, now.🙂

        Like

    • Kodi

      I think its been an exciting, well contested first half. I don’t see how you can say Chelsea “refused to play soccer” in the first half.

      Like

      • Atletico Man

        Neither team has parked the bus in fact. It has been a fun game, in fact.

        Like

      • Increase

        Real game this time. Mourinho is going to regret not trying for an away goal. Which is wierd. His thing is usually getting exactly 1 away goal.

        Like

  • Paul

    The neutral fan has gotta want Atletico in the final. Chelsea are so unlikable in every sense – their style, their manager, most of their players, their Russian gangster owner…

    Like

  • cattenaccio

    We might complain about it being anti-football but obviously Jose has read Gladwell’s “David and Goliath.” He’s thrown out the rules to create his own to win. We might complain about the process but the outcome is all that matters. However, his strategy doesn’t seem to be working.

    Like

  • Ralph

    The chickens are coming home to roost, Jose.

    This is entirely on him for playing to not score in the first leg. No away goals.

    Like

    • Atletico Man

      I believe this is the first time there will be a derby for a final, right?

      Like

      • Increase

        Either way, that’s gunna be a mental game. Atletico with a double? It’s possible.

        Like

  • RB

    Boy does Chelsea tend to do a lot of standing around and ball watching now and then…

    Like

  • Atletico Man

    Give Cholo credit. He keeps them playing attacking football even with a big lead.

    Like

  • Kodi

    Well its been a good run for Chelsea. Although I won’t have a horse in the race, Athletico and Real will be a great one. At this point I’m leaning towards Real, watching them counter is a joy to behold. And Ronaldo has been spectacular of late.

    Like

  • Ralph

    The total team cost of the two teams Mourinho coached these past two season is at about 720 million pounds or 1.2 billion dollars.

    Zero trophies.

    Like

  • Ralph

    Simeone has knocked two different Mourihno-coached teams out of a major competition knockout stage two consecutive years.

    Like

  • Ralph

    Ah nothing like Mourihno claiming Chelsea were the better team. Nope. Nobody expected that.

    Like

  • Gerard D.

    Damnit UEFA, please fine this guy and get rid of him. Now the referee blaming.

    Like

  • Gerard D.

    Is anyone else watching Sky Sports?

    Producer forgot to turn off the fan feed… Madrid fans chanting that Mourihno is the son of a whore. Ouch.

    Like

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