UEFA Champions League Preview: Basel v Chelsea
By Football News
Chelsea travel to Basel for Tuesday's UEFA Champions League Group E clash knowing a point will see them through to the round of 16.
Jose Mourinho's men have responded well following a shock loss to the Swiss side on matchday one, posting three successive wins.
The London club have scored 10 goals and conceded none on that impressive run, with 3-0 home and away wins over Schalke particularly impressive.
Chelsea sit third in the Premier League – four points behind leaders Arsenal – and the manner of Saturday's 3-0 win at London rivals West Ham will have delighted Mourinho.
The Portuguese, who is attempting to become the first manager to win the Champions League at three different clubs, saw his side record just their second league triumph on the road this season at Upton Park.
Frank Lampard scored twice against Sam Allardyce's side, while Oscar also netted as Chelsea bounced back from a loss to Newcastle United and a disappointing home draw against West Brom.
Striker Fernando Torres missed out once again with an adductor problem, while left-back Ashley Cole was an unused substitute as he continues to nurse a rib injury.
Apart from Marco van Ginkel (knee), Chelsea have no long-term absentees though, and they will be eager to avenge an embarrassing home defeat in September.
Mohamed Salah and Marco Streller scored in the final 20 minutes on that occasion as Basel won 2-1, ending Chelsea's 29-match unbeaten home record in the group stages of the competition.
The two sides also met in last season's UEFA Europa League semi-finals, with Chelsea winning both legs in a 5-2 aggregate triumph.
Basel top the Swiss Super League by three points after coming from behind to beat Thun 4-1 on Saturday, with Streller – who has now scored nine times this season – getting on the scoresheet.
They are unbeaten in their last eight matches and are in terrific form on their travels, undefeated in all 15 games on the road in the current campaign.
Both of their losses this season have come at home and they will be without Chile midfielder Marcelo Diaz, who suffered a rib injury while on international duty.
Behrang Safari (thigh) will also miss out when Basel look to complete an unlikely double against formidable opposition.
They are unbeaten in their last four Champions League matches against English sides, including a famous 2-1 win over Manchester United in December 2011 that saw their opponents fail to qualify from the group stages.