Connect with us


Salzburg v Chelsea – Preview, Predictions, and Best Bets

Salzburg host Chelsea at the Red Bull Arena in Austria on Tuesday night.

Oumar Diakite & Mason Mount

Salzburg host Chelsea at the Red Bull Arena in Austria on Tuesday night. The Blues sit just one point clear of Salzburg after four matches in their UEFA Champions League group and this fixture will go a long way to deciding who progresses to the knockout stage. The reverse fixture finished in a 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge in Graham Potter’s first match after taking over.

Salzburg Form

The Red Bulls sit top of the Austrian Bundesliga with just one loss in their first 13 fixtures of the season. They’ve drawn three of their last five league fixtures, twice on the eve of big Champions League fixtures.

They sit second in their European group having started with 1-1 draws at home to AC Milan and away to Chelsea on matchdays one and two. A 1-0 home win against Dinamo Zagreb followed, prior to drawing 1-1 in Croatia two weeks ago. Since that result, they’ve won 3-1 at Austria Vienna, beaten Admira 6-1 in a cup game and drawn 0-0 at home to Sturm Graz.

Salzburg Team News

Salzburg have a number of injuries for this match and only named six substitutes for their weekend fixture. Defensive midfielder Ousmane Diakite is out injured and so it another midfielder in Nicolas Capaldo.

Captain Andreas Ulmer, midfielder Luka Sucic and forwards Dijon Kameri, Fernando and Sekou Koita are all injury doubts. Highly-rated forward Benjamin Sesko is expected to make do with a place on the bench. Noah Okafor is a key man with goals in each of the first three group games in Europe this season.

Salzburg Motivation

A win would give Salzburg a great chance of topping the group. They’re unbeaten so far but have drawn three of their four fixtures. A draw means they may need to win in Milan on matchday six so they will go all out for the victory here.

Expect a high-octane and attacking approach, unlike in the reverse fixture where they were pretty defensive and look to nullify Chelsea.

Chelsea Form

Since Graham Potter replaced Thomas Tuchel, Chelsea are unbeaten with five wins and three draws in eight matches. The English coach oversaw five successive victories including winning home and away against AC Milan, albeit against ten men in the latter fixture.

Since that victory, Chelsea eked out a 2-0 win at Aston Villa despite allowing 2.10 Expected Goals, before a disappointing performance in a 0-0 stalemate at Brentford. In their last match, a late Jorginho penalty put Chelsea 1-0 up against Man Utd at home but a late equaliser saw two points dropped. Potter’s side made it three less-than-convincing performances in a row in a flat outing.

Chelsea Team News

The Blues are without four of their best XI for this match. Reece James is missing at right wingback and both Wesley Fofana and Kalidou Koulibaly are ruled out in defence. Marc Cucurella has struggled for a form of late with illness hindering him.

N’Golo Kante is out long-term in midfield but Mateo Kovacic should return to the XI after his first half introduction from the bench against Man Utd. Christian Pulisic is hoping to earn a start in the front areas but Kai Havertz is set to be left out due to some below-par form.

Chelsea Motivation

Chelsea sits top of the group and can effectively qualify with a win in Austria. A defeat would open things up again so motivation to win this fixture will be very high.

They won’t sit back but also don’t expect an overly aggressive, attacking display. If Graham Potter selects five defenders, then he is looking to be solid first and foremost and try to get the first goal to open up the match.

Key Stats

Salzburg are unbeaten in 4 CL matches this season (W1, D3)

Salzburg have drawn 6 of their last 11 matches (all comps)

Salzburg are unbeaten in 7 home CL matches (including 1-1 draws against Bayern and AC Milan)

Chelsea have lost just twice in 14 away CL matches

CFC have conceded in 4 of their last 5 away CL fixtures

Chelsea have drawn their last 2 matches (all comps)


This looks set to be a tight match. Salzburg are strong at home and have a huge motivation for this fixture. Chelsea are weakened at the back but should have just about enough to leave with a score draw from a tough away ground.

Best Bet: Both teams to score at 1.68

Alternative Bet: Salzburg Win/Draw double chance at 2.10

Value Bet: Draw at 3.65

James is a football analyst who writes about the tactics of the PSL and English Premier League. He holds the UEFA A coaching licence and has previously worked for several clubs in analysis roles.Twitter:

More in Soccer