Chelsea are the European champions and the defence of their crown is going well so far, with Thomas Tuchel’s side in a good position to reach the quarter-finals for the second consecutive campaign. If they do so, it’ll be the first time Chelsea have hit back-to-back quarter-finals in the Champions League in 10 years, when they followed up a quarter-final exit in 2011 by winning the whole thing in 2012.
But it’s not just a landmark moment for Chelsea. Thomas Tuchel is set to take charge of his 50th Champions League game against Lille on Wednesday night and the German has a pretty decent record. Tuchel has won 31 of his 49 games so far and victory over Lille would set a new record for most wins by a manager in their first 50 games – with Zinedine Zidane’s 31 wins in 50 the current record.
History doesn’t shine well on Lille and they will have to overcome their own poor record to reach a first ever time. The last time Lille were in the last 16 of the Champions League they were knocked out by an English side, as Manchester United won with a pair of 1-0 victories in 2006/07.
Lille have also been eliminated from each of their previous three European knockout ties when losing the first leg, in the 2004/05 UEFA Cup last 16, the aforementioned 2006/07 Champions League last 16 and the last 32 of the Europa League last season.
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Lille vs Chelsea: Match Stats
Kai Havertz is the man of the moment for Chelsea right now and it was he who blew the roof off Stamford Bridge at the weekend, scoring a late winner against Newcastle United. The German is finding form leading the line for Chelsea and has scored in each of his past four games across all competitions, including the 2-0 win over Lille last month.
Chelsea’s Champions League glory last season was built on their excellent defence and it’s continued this season. Fascinatingly, each of Chelsea’s last 11 Champions League wins have come with a clean sheet – including 10 during Tuchel’s stewardship in just 14 matches. The Blues have also advanced from nine of their 11 Champions League knockout ties when winning the first leg.
22 February 2022 – Chelsea 2-0 Lille – Champions League
10 December 2019 – Chelsea 2-1 Lille – Champions League
02 October 2019 – Lille 1-2 Chelsea – Champions League
This will be the fourth match between Chelsea and Lille, and the English side are looking to extend their 100% record. The Blues did the double over Lille in the 2019/20 Champions League group stage under Frank Lampard and, of course, won 2-0 in the last 16 first leg last month.