Chelsea visit Eintracht Frankfurt tonight aiming to boost their hopes of reaching the final of the Europa League.
The Blues have enjoyed a largely untroubled passage to the last four, but they could find things tough against the surprise package of this season’s competition.
Frankfurt’s 14-match unbeaten run in Europe was ended in the first leg of their quarter-final tie against Benfica, but they fought back from 4-2 down to progress on away goals.
However, Chelsea are favourites to reach the final having won 11 and drawn one of their 12 games in the Europa League this term.
Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri has a few injury worries ahead of the game, with Antonio Rudiger and Willian both doubtful while Callum Hudson-Odoi is out for the season.
Frankfurt will be without forward Ante Rebic who will serve a one-match suspension, but Evan Ndicka returns after a ban.
Mijat Gacinovic is an injury doubt for the German side, with Jonathan de Guzman his likely replacement if he doesn’t recover from a stomach injury.
Chelsea breezed through the opening stage of the competition, picking up 16 points out of a possible 18 to finish top of Group L.
They have beaten Malmo, Dynamo Kiev and Slavia Prague in the knockout stage to book their place in the semi-finals.
Frankfurt were hugely impressive in Group H, smashing 17 goals and conceding just five as they won all six matches.
The German side have gone on to defeat Shakhtar Donetsk, Inter Milan and Benfica to reach the last four of a European competition for the first time since 1979/80.
Luka Jovic is undoubtedly their danger man having bagged 25 goals in all competitions this season. He has scored eight in the Europa League and will need to be watched closely throughout the tie.
Chelsea will hope that Eden Hazard can finally find his shooting boots in the competition after failing to fire in Europe this term.
The Belgian star has scored 16 Premier League goals in 2018/19, but he is without a goal in five Europa League appearances.
With the winners of the competition entering the Champions League next season, both sides will be eager to book their place in the final against either Arsenal or Valencia.
Chelsea’s greater experience in Europe should stand them in good stead against Frankfurt, but it would be foolish to write off the German side’s chances.
Eintracht Frankfurt vs Chelsea Betting Tips
The Blues won 1-0 at Slavia Prague in the previous round. Back them at odds of 25/4 with BetUK to repeat that scoreline on Thursday.
Olivier Giroud has scored 10 goals in the Europa League this season. Wager on him at 23/4 to open the scoring in Germany.
Chelsea have a strong record against German teams in UEFA competitions. They can be backed at 1/2 with BetUK to qualify for the final.